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Chantal expected to weaken; come close
chantal wed am
This NOAA prediction of Chantal's path was released at about 11 a.m. Wednesday. - photo by NOAA graphic

Tropical Storm Chantal will be right off the coast of the Georgia-Florida line early Saturday, but will no longer by a storm, if today's forecast from the National Hurricane Center holds true.

"Chantal is forecast to weaken to a tropical depression or degenerate into a tropical wave during the next 24 hours," the center forecast at 11 a.m.

It said the storm is now south of Hispaniola, headed toward Jamaica at 29 mph.

"A turn toward the west-northwest and northwest with a gradual decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 48 hours," the forecast reads. "On this track, Chantal or its remnants will move between Eastern Cuba and Jamaica tonight and emerge over the Florida Straits Thursday night."

The NOAA and other weather services are saying that even if it degrades, Chantal could still bring several inches of rain to Coastal Georgia and that is on top of a trough developing over the region that is expected to generate rain leading into the weekend.

At 11 Wednesday, Chantal was at latitude 16.5 north, longitude 72.0 west. Its minimum central pressure was 1,011 millibars, 29.85 inches.

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