CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) — Hurricane Lee is making its way closer to the southeastern U.S. and while it is NOT expected to make landfall, we may still feel some effects here in western Massachusetts. The 22News Storm Team is Working for You on what to prepare for this weekend.

Hurricane Lee currently sits in the Atlantic as a category 2 hurricane with sustained winds of 105 miles per hour. As it makes its way towards the coast, it will upgrade to a category 4 hurricane, and then downgrade to a category three within the next day or so. As it moves ever closer to the East Coast it is expected to be a category 1 hurricane with sustained winds of 90 miles an hour.

Thankfully, it won’t be making landfall in states like Florida, Georgia, or the Carolinas. While it won’t be landing in any of these states, it could still have strong effects as it makes its way up the coast.

High surf and strong rip currents are the two main factors. The term rip currents gets thrown around a lot, so here’s what that means: as waves come crashing onto the shore and get pulled back into the ocean, they make a current. Sometimes these currents are so strong they can pull people out to sea.

To get out of them, swimming to shore is NOT what you want to do. You are going to tire yourself out, and the most important thing to keep in mind is to stay above the water. Swim parallel to the shore until a lifeguard or other authorities can get to you.

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