Ophelia becomes the 10th hurricane of the 2017 Atlantic season

Ophelia becomes the 10th hurricane of the 2017 Atlantic season

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said at 5 p.m. Tuesday that Ophelia had top sustained winds of 60 miles per hour (95 kph).

Ophelia is now located about 785 miles southwest of the Azores, a group of autonomous Portuguese islands in the North Atlantic.

Ophelia is now located across the north-central Atlantic Ocean, roughly 2400 miles from the Grand Strand. It has maximum sustained winds of 70 mph - an increase of 10 mph from its update six hours earlier - and is traveling southeast at 3 mph.

Ophelia could brush by the Azores this weekend.

Tropical Storm Ophelia is expected to strengthen to a hurricane as it spins far out over the Atlantic.

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There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.

Assuming Ophelia's wind speeds pick up as expected, this would be the tenth consecutive storm to reach hurricane strength in the Atlantic this season. That has not happened since 1893, according to McNoldy.

Ophalia is presently the only storm the NHC is tracking in the Atlantic or Pacific.

Ophelia is forecast to drift slowly east for the next day or so before stronger upper-level winds arrive later this week and accelerate it toward the east-northeast just south of the Azores. The storm may still be capable of producing powerful winds, on the order of 60 to 80 miles per hour, when it makes its closest approach to Ireland and the United Kingdom, which it's forecast to do on Monday.

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