Frances returns to water, could get a boost - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

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Frances returns to water, could get a boost

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September 6, 2004

Undated-- Tropical storm Frances has lost some of its steam, but still should not be taken lightly.

The National Hurricane Center has downgraded Frances to tropical storm status. Its maximum sustained winds are near 70 miles-an-hour as it crawls west-northwest at ten miles-an-hour.

The rain the storm brings to South Georgia could be a huge problem. Forecasters estimate that it could bring as much as 10 inches of rain to the Channel 10 viewing area.

Forecasters say Frances could regain hurricane strength before hitting the Florida panhandle later today. Damage has not been as severe as expected. At least two deaths are blamed on the storm.

Emergency officials in south Florida say people may want to think twice about taking down the hurricane shutters.

As hurricane Frances battered Florida, another strong storm is churning in the central Atlantic. Ivan is already a category four hurricane and is due to reach Barbados by Tuesday.

Hurricane experts say Ivan is too far away to tell with any certainty whether it will hit the United States. But they say Ivan has the potential to follow a path similar to Frances. Frances is crawling towards the gulf coast at about ten miles-an-hour. It could regain hurricane strength, renewing its assault on Florida.

posted at 7:30AM by dave.miler@walb.com