Tropical Storm Isaias gains strength as it nears East Coast

The storm is expected to make landfall late Monday along the Carolina coast, prompting new concerns about hospital capacity, after it slammed the Caribbean and left at least three dead.
3:43 | 08/04/20

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Transcript for Tropical Storm Isaias gains strength as it nears East Coast
Good evening and it's great so have you with us as we begin another week together here and tonight, as this country fights the coronavirus, millions in the east are about to deal with yet another threat. A tropical storm that could become a hurricane. From the Carolinas up through New York and Boston. In New York City, those winds gusting up to 60, even 70 miles an hour. Warnings posted up and down the coast tonight. Dangerous winds, blinding rain and a storm surge of up to five feet expected. Wind, heavy rain already near Myrtle Beach tonight. Time lapse video actually showing outer bands of the system rolling through Jacksonville, Florida, today. The northeast, as I mentioned, now bracing for the storm, too, and the potential for hurricane-force winds from Philadelphia to New York. So, we have the latest track for you tonight, and we begin with ABC's Eva pilgrim in Myrtle Beach, leading us off. Reporter: Tonight, outer bands of Isaias closing in on the Carolinas and threatening the entire east coast with powerful winds and life threatening storm surge. It's moving quickly enough that it won't really have a chance to weaken. Reporter: In New York City, they're putting up mile-long barriers in low lying areas to keep the water out. Coronavirus cases and deaths on the rise in several of the states in Isaias' path. Florida avoiding a direct hit, but forced to close some outdoor testing sites because of Isaias' winds. The Carolinas might not be as lucky. Shelters will screen people for coronavirus symptoms. Shelters will have ppe and will honor social distancing. I've been here 35 years. We've never seen a situation like this where the hospital has been under this much stress. Reporter: Weeks ago, tidelands medical center just outside Myrtle Beach had to call the National Guard to help handle all their covid cases. Tonight, preparing to face a surge in patients. The hospital is absolutely full with covid. The icu is, we're over capacity. The E.R. Is. And now with the storm coming it's just something else to deal with. Reporter: Isaias killed at least three in the caribbean, knocking out power to nearly half a million on Puerto Rico. It could stay at or near tropical storm strength all the way to new England. And we are starting to see those outer bads. This storm surge is expected to be three to five feet and this storm will hit at just about the same time as high tide. It is also a full moon tonight, so, that means a higher than normal tide and the potential for significant flash flooding. The ore major concern here, tornadoes. This area is under a tornado watch until 2:00 A.M. David? Yes, so, take this very seriously. Eva pilgrim, thank you tonight. Again, the Carolinas, straight up into New York City and Boston. So, let's get to senior meteorologist rob Marciano with the timing and the track of this. He's in Carolina beach, north Carolina, tonight. Hey, rob. Reporter: Hi, David. It's not a cat 3 or 4 but the track of this is just remarkable. Everyone on the east coast is going to be impacted. We're under a hurricane warning now for this beach. Look at this. All these warnings and watches up through new England and that mimics the track, which takes it new there North Carolina and up 95, over New York City tomorrow. We do have a tornado watch out. It will be making landfall in the next few hours, potentially as a haur cane. It's going to have damaging winds, a damaging storm surge and winds 60, 80 miles an hour. Raleigh, Richmond tomorrow D.C. And philly tomorrow afternoon. We could have tornadoes in this area, as well. Philly, New York tomorrow and in through new England tomorrow the next 38 hours, David, will be intense. Doesn't matter the category of this storm, it's going to be dangerous. Rob, thank you. We're thinking of all the families in the storm zone

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