Subtropical Storm Beryl formed off the coast of the Carolinas late in the day on Friday.
A weak area of low pressure with a broad zone of drenching showers and thunderstorms stretching from the Southeast coast to the Bahamas became better organized and was designated Subtropical Storm Beryl.
A Subtropical Storm is a storm system that has both tropical and non-tropical characteristics.
Subtropical Storm Beryl currently has maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour. For the latest stats on Beryl, check out the AccuWeather.com Hurricane Center.
Downpours associated with Beryl will aim westward with time this weekend and will swing onshore over a drought-stricken area.
The latest indications are that while the strength of Beryl is likely to be limited by wind shear, the system will turn westward this weekend, potentially impacting areas of northeastern Florida, southeastern Georgia and the coastal Carolinas.
With folks heading to the beach, barbecuing and participating in memorial services and functions, the timing of the rain could be better. However, given the seriousness of the drought, this has the potential to be a drought buster for some locations.
According to Tropical Weather Expert Dan Kottlowski, "When even weak tropical systems move ashore, the energy built up is often released in the form of tremendous rainfall. The stronger and slower moving the system, the greater the rainfall potential."
While we will not likely have the strength factor with this one, we do have slow movement.
The core of the beefiest downpours will likely be near the center. However, even slow-moving storms on the fringe of the system could unload inches of rain.
Moisture associated in part with Beryl during its infancy dropped tremendous rain in parts of Cuba and the Bahamas.
According to World Weather Expert Jim Andrews, "Santi Spiritus, Cuba, received 17.1 inches of rain this week with 15.1 inches falling on Jacaro, Cuba."
"Freeport in the Bahamas picked up 12.7 inches with most of that falling during the past 48 hours," Andrews added.
This National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration drought status map indicates areas of extreme (red) and exceptional (dark red) over a large area of the southeastern U.S. Rain is forecast by AccuWeather.com to reach part of this area this weekend into early next week.
Areas near and north of where the system make landfall will likely have to contend with locally gusty winds and rough surf for a time.
"Boaters and bathers should keep up to date on the system as it can bring very gusty thunderstorms and rough conditions, even if it fails to develop fully," Kottlowski said.
Latest on the Tropics
Tropical Depression Two has lost its battle to become the next Atlantic tropical storm, but it will still increase shower activity across the Caribbean to end the week.
After temperatures briefly climb to typical midsummer levels, another cooldown will roll into the Midwest and expand to the East for the last part of July.
A potent storm system moving out of the Northwest United States will bring an elevated risk of tornadoes to parts of Alberta and Saskatchewan on Thursday.
Severe thunderstorms that blasted areas of Arkansas with damaging winds and heavy rainfall will continue to race through eastern Texas.
Fresh cooler and less humid air will settle over the Washington, D.C., area for Thursday and Friday.
As California continues to be plagued by intense drought conditions, some surfers are reaping what may be one of very few benefits to such a dry season.
Simla, CO (1996)
4.5" diameter hail.
Mid-Atlantic Ocean (1788)
(22nd-24th) George Washington Hurricane; After causing ship disasters off SW Bermuda, the storm moved NW over Tidewater, NC and VA to pass right over George Washington's Mt. Vernon plantation. On July 24th, George Washington wrote in his diary: "About noon the wind suddenly shifted from NE to SW and blew the remaining part of the day violently from that quarter. The tide this time rose near higher than it was ever known to do, driving boats, etc. into fields, where no tide had ever been heard of before, and most, it is apprehended, having done infinite damage on their wharves at Alexandria, Norfolk, Baltimore, etc. At home all day."
Canton, IL (1975)
A tornado ripped through a 3-block section of downtown, killing 2 people, injuring 75 and creating $5 million damage. A 15-foot wooden plank was driven through an auto engine block, splitting the front of the car in two. The woman driving was not injured. National Guardsmen were called in to prevent looting.