RALEIGH Tropical Storm Emily is expected to bring rough surf and riptides to the N.C. coast this weekend as it passes just off shore on Thursday. The National Weather Service in Raleigh said that Emily’s path up the east coast could shift, but that it now appears that it will not make landfall in the Carolinas. Emily dumped as much as eight inches of rain over much of Florida on Monday but was expected to weaken to a tropical depression after making a morning landfall on the state’s west coast, the National Hurricane Center said.No injuries or major property damage has been reported. Several school districts curtailed summer programs and the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay, part of a major north-south interstate freeway, was closed because of high winds.Florida Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in 31 of the state’s 67 counties to allow for easier cooperation between agencies. By midday, no evacuation orders had been given, the governor’s office said in a statement.Emily, the fifth named storm of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season, made landfall on Anna Maria Island near the Tampa-St. Petersburg area. At 11 a.m. the storm had maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour.The National Weather Service also projected the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season will have more named storms, hurricanes and major hurricanes than normal. In 2016, the Atlantic season was the most active since 2012, with 15 named storms, including 7 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes.
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