Tropical depression 2 forms near South Carolina coast

The storm is most likely heading towards the Carolinas.

COLUMBUS (AP) —A tropical storm warning has been issued for the South Carolina coast after forecasters say the second tropical cyclone of the Atlantic season formed.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami says the warning issued Friday extends across the entire South Carolina coast. The warning means tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere in the warning area within 36 hours.

Tropical storm conditions are expected to first reach the coast Saturday night. About 2 to 4 inches of rain is expected to fall over parts of coastal Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.

The depression has maximum sustained winds of 35 mph (55 kph) and is centered about 435 miles (695 kilometers) southeast of Charleston, South Carolina.

U.S. government forecasters expect a near-normal Atlantic hurricane season, after three relatively slow years. But they also say climate conditions that influence storm development are making it difficult to predict how many hurricanes and tropical storms will arise over the next six months.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s season outlook calls for 10 to 16 named storms, with four to eight hurricanes and one to four “major” ones with winds reaching 111 mph and up.

The Atlantic hurricane season officially starts June 1.

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