Florida still in Ernesto's path

| 8/29/2006

Tropical Storm Ernesto is expected to make landfall in the Florida Keys Tuesday evening, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Although there were fears it might hit with hurricane strength – at last word – it was still a tropical storm with maximum sustained winds well beneath the 74 mph hurricane threshold.

But heavy rains could cause flooding as the storm moves up Florida’s east coast.

A tropical storm warning and a hurricane watch remains in effect from New Smyrna Beach southward on the Florida east coast. And, a tropical storm warning remains in effect along the Florida coast north of New Smyrna Beach northward to Altamaha Sound, GA.

No mandatory evacuations were ordered – but tourists were asked to leave the low-lying Florida Keys.