Tropical Storm Beryl takes aim at eastern Caribbean

Tropical Storm Beryl is churning in the Atlantic on Saturday and taking aim at the small islands that make up the eastern Caribbean. It appears, based on the current track, the storm will weaken as it moves just south of Puerto Rico, portions of which remain in the dark nine months after Hurricane Maria.

Beryl was a tropical storm late Saturday afternoon with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph, after starting out as a hurricane on Saturday morning.

It is located about 605 miles east-southeast of the Lesser Antilles and is moving west at 17 mph.

It is projected to cross the islands late Sunday or overnight Monday as a tropical storm and continue to weaken as it enters the Caribbean Sea.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for Dominica and a tropical storm watch is in effect for Martinique, Guadeloupe, St. Martin and St. Barthelemy. Additional watch areas may be required for other islands later today.

Beryl is expected to produce 2 to 4 inches of rain through Sunday across the southern Leeward Islands and northern Windward Islands.

Tropical Depression 3 was located 195 miles south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, Saturday morning and moving north-northwest at 6 mph.

Maximum sustained winds were 30 mph.

Gradual strengthening is forecast during the next few days and while it is expected to reach Category 1 hurricane strength by Tuesday, the track remains offshore. However, this still does raise rip current and rough surf risks through the end of next week for the mid-Atlantic coastline.

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ABC News: U.S.