Hurricane Elsa became the first official hurricane of the 2021 season Friday morning after gaining significant strength over the Atlantic.

While the National Hurricane Center is not anticipating the storm to strengthen further over the next 48 hours, residents of the Keys and South Florida have put on notice for potential landfall sometime around the early morning hours of Tuesday, July 5.

The fifth named storm of the season is projected to continue a general west-northwest path over the Caribbean. Hurricane warnings are currently in effect for Barbados, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and St. Lucia.

Elsa set a record by becoming the earliest E-named storm in the Atlantic, overtaking the previous record holder, Tropical Storm Edouard, which formed on July 6, 2020.

Last year’s hurricane season produced a record 30 named storms. With this year’s projected to be another above-average season, and given five named storms before the 4th of July 2021, is shaping up to be close behind.

Elsa’s track will likely be influenced by the jet stream near North America and an area of high pressure over the western Atlantic. AccuWeather predicts that the storm could potentially strengthen if it slides in south of the Caribbean islands and into the Gulf of Mexico.

While policyholders in the Keys and South Florida are not facing any threats or warnings, there is potential for developments over the weekend.

As a precaution, Merlin Law Group would like to remind policyholders of our Hurricane Checklist, which contains helpful items for policyholders to consider with hurricane damage claims.

We hope you stay safe should Elsa make its way over here. As always, Merlin Law Group is here to assist with any hurricane damage claims.