BLOG: Hurricane Maria headed to Dominican Republic as Cat 3 storm

BLOG: Hurricane Maria headed to Dominican Republic as Cat 3 storm

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - * Still feels like summer
* Dry and warm pattern
* Maria departs Puerto Rico

Summer 2017 is ending on a warm note. Charlotte reached 90 degrees on Wednesday, making it the warmest day since Aug. 23 when we hit 93 degrees. We'll continue to have very low rain chances and afternoon readings in the mid to upper 80s for the rest of the week. Overnight lows will be in the mid 60s. Fall officially arrives at 4:02 p.m. Friday but it won't feel like it. The weekend looks to stay warm and dry with temperatures remaining above the average high of 79 degrees.

The tropics aren't nearly as quiet. First, there's Jose. The storm is gradually weakening but still bringing gusty showers, dangerous surf and rip currents to the northeast coast for a few more days.

The more dangerous storm is Maria, which is currently a Category 3 hurricane and is pulling away from Puerto Rico and skirting both the Dominican Republic and Turks & Caicos, where hurricane warnings are in effect. Almost all of the models keep the storm off the US coast into next week and it turns north from its current position.  We'll be monitoring and hoping that forecast holds true.

- Meteorologist Al Conklin

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