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Tropical Storm Watch Remains for Some of Florida as Elsa Weakens

Though Tropical Storm Elsa was briefly upgraded to a hurricane a few days ago, it has weakened and slowed back to a tropical storm. It continues to weaken as it makes landfall, but a tropical storm watch remains in place for South Florida.

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The storm is currently heading towards Jamaica and Cuba, with a cone of uncertainty that would still bring it over Orlando, Florida. On Saturday, the storm’s center passed to the south of the Dominican Republic and Haiti, causing heavy rain and winds on the islands.

According to the National Hurricane Center, Elsa was moving west-northwest at 13 mph this morning. The center was about 45 miles east-northeast of Kingston, Jamaica, which is under a tropical storm warning. The storm’s maximum sustained winds are 65 mph.

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A tropical storm watch, which means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the area, is in effect for Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, some Cuban provinces, and the Florida Keys from Craig Key westward to the Dry Tortugas. Elsa is forecast to move near or over the west coast of Florida on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Governor Ron DeSantis has issued a state of emergency for 15 Florida counties: Charlotte, Citrus, Collier, DeSoto, Hardee, Hernando, Hillsborough, Lee, Levy, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Pasco, Pinellas, and Sarasota.