Hurricane Maria could hit United Kingdom at weekend, forecasters say


The storm is about 160 miles east-southeast of Cape Hatteras.

Maria weakened to a tropical storm on Thursday as it continued to move away from the U.S.

An evacuation is underway on an island on North Carolina's Outer Banks as Hurricane Maria moves north.

Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico on September 20, leaving most of the island without power and communication, NBC News reported.

A man carries water in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Canovanas, Puerto Rico, Sep. That should shunt it to the north over the next few days. Maria and Category 2 Hurricane Lee are no longer threats to land.

So the hurricane center nudged its official forecast track to the west a bit to account for the spread.

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Maria's maximum sustained winds Tuesday reached near 75 miles per hour. It is still possible Lee becomes a major hurricane in the next 12 hours or so as it remains in a zone of warm waters and low wind shear.

The Met Office said the potential effects will be "far from those experienced in the Caribbean", but added that weather systems like Maria can bring very strong winds and heavy rain.

"Storm surge flooding is occurring, especially along the sound side of the North Carolina Outer Banks, and a storm surge warning and watch are in effect for portions of eastern North Carolina".

The hurricane center said some spots on the island could get a total of 40 inches of rain from Maria.

No injuries have been reported on the USA mainland with Maria. Wave heights along the shore will increase during the next few days, creating risky surf and increased chances of rip currents.