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The scene at downtown at North Myrtle Beach as Tropical Storm Isaias approaches the South Carolina coastline on Monday. Photo: by Logan Cyrus/AFP via Getty Images

Hurricane Isaias is expected to make landfall Monday night with "dangerous winds and storm surge," the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in an 8 p.m. update.

The latest: Isaias reached hurricane strength Monday evening. A tropical storm warning has been extended into Maine, and a tornado watch has been issued for parts of the Carolinas until 2 a.m.

  • A storm surge warning is in effect the North Carolina and Virginia border. A hurricane warning is in effect from South Santee River, S.C., to Surf City, N.C.
  • Two-to-four inches of rain fell from Miami to Palm Beach and "a few hundred customers" lost power as Isaias skirted Florida's east coast Sunday, per the Miami Herald, which notes little damage had been reported by Sunday evening.

What to watch: "It's going to be a teetering thing ... a strong storm or really weak hurricane," according to National Weather Service Charleston meteorologist Rebecca Davidson, the Post and Courier reports. “It’s been an interesting storm, that’s for sure.”

The big picture: Isaias pummeled the Bahamas and parts of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic as a Category 1 hurricane Friday before being downgraded to a tropical storm Saturday evening.

  • Isaias strengthened slightly as it brushed past Florida's east coast, per the NHC.
  • Isaias is expected to continue up the East Coast of the U.S. through the middle of this week, mostly as a strong tropical storm.

The state of play: North Carolina evacuations began Saturday evening in Holden and Ocean Isle beaches and Hatteras and Ocracoke islands.

  • South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster (R) tweeted Saturday, "Evacuations are unnecessary, but please take personal precautions."

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Updated Nov 10, 2020 - Science

Theta becomes 29th named storm in record hurricane season

A satellite image of Subtropical Storm Theta. Photo: National Hurricane Center/Twitter

Subtropical Storm Theta formed in the Northeast Atlantic Monday night, becoming the 29th named storm of the 2020 hurricane season, the National Hurricane Center confirmed.

Why it matters: The formation of Theta, which was some 995 miles southwest of the Azores overnight, breaks the record for the most named storms in a season — set in 2005. The World Meteorological Organization sets 21 alphabetical names for every season (excluding Q,U, X, Y and Z). This is the second time ever it's used all and had to turn to the Greek alphabet.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with further context on the hurricane season.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Bipartisan group of senators seeks coronavirus stimulus deal

Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine). Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

At least eight Republican and Democratic senators have formed an informal working group aimed at securing new coronavirus spending during the lame-duck session, a move favored by President-elect Biden, two sources familiar with the group tell Axios.

Why it matters: It may be the most significant bipartisan step toward COVID relief in months.

FCC chairman to depart in January

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Ajit Pai will leave his post as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission on Jan. 20, the agency said today.

Why it matters: Pai's Inauguration Day departure is in keeping with agency tradition, and could set up the Biden administration with a 2-1 Democratic majority at the FCC if the Senate fails to confirm another Trump nominee during the lame-duck period.