Hurricane Chris threatens East Coast with unsafe rip currents through weekend

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Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 40 miles (65 kilometers) from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 kilometers). More data should be available later in the day.

Chris will make for an angry ocean with high waves, pounding surf and storm surge a concern for southern parts of the island tonight, particularly during high tide.

Communities on the Avalon can expect to receive 20 to 30 milimetres of rain, possibly a little more if the system slows down somewhat.

The storm is moving northeast toward Newfoundland, Environment Canada said, and wind and rainfall warnings are in effect for the southeastern portion of the island. When the storm reaches Newfoundland, it will bring heavy rains totaling one to three inches with isolated maximum amounts of six inches, posing the risk of flash flooding. Similar rainfalls are forecasted for the Bonavista Peninsula, the Burin Peninsula, Connaigre, Terra Nova and Clarenville areas. ABC13 meteorologist Collin Myers says the hurricane has a defined eye and is picking up speed as it heads in a northeasterly direction.

It was expected to gain strength Wednesday before weakening to a strong post-tropical cyclone on Thursday.

But the bad weather shouldn't stick around too long - Chris is moving fairly quickly.

She said: "It looks likely that its energy will end up in our jet stream, but the forecast computer models can not yet decide if that will kick the jet stream our way and ruin the start to the school holidays or stall the jet stream to the west and bring renewed heat for the rest of July".

"Rip current danger is still high today, but by tomorrow, the storm will be dissipating in the North Atlantic and the danger will be easing up", said Gardner.

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