The National Hurricane Center says Tropical Storm Hermine has formed from a system swirling in the Gulf of Mexico, and a potential track has the storm headed in a direction that could eventually take it near the tri-state area.
The Miami-based center says a hurricane hunter plane has determined that a tropical depression strengthened Wednesday into the named storm and Hermine now boasts top sustained winds of 40 mph.
The center says the tropical storm should turn more toward the northeast with increasing speed on Thursday and could swirl up to the Jersey Shore late Saturday night.
Storm Team 4 says that depending on the exact path and strength of the storm, localized and coastal flooding could be possible, along with tropical downpours. The region should see at least some disruptions as the storm moves up the east coast.
The storm would likely drift out to sea in the afternoon on Labor Day.
A tropical storm off the tri-state's coasts would likely exacerbate strong rip currents that have been observed at beaches across the region in recent days.
On Wednesday, lifeguards at Long Island beaches had to rescue two women and one boy from rip currents.