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Tropical Storm Gert forms east of the Bahamas

99L strengthened into TD eight forecast to strengthen but stay away from any land

The storm is expected to bring a higher risk of rip currents to Florida's east coast, according to Jessie Smith, meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

The hurricane center said gradual strengthening is expected, and the depression should become Tropical Storm Gert later today. The forecast is for TD 8 to strengthen into a tropical storm and move north northwest.

As of Sunday evening, TS Gert has winds of 40 MPH and it's center of circulation is 600 miles off the coast of Myrtle Beach.

A turn toward the north is forecast to occur Sunday night, and to the north-northeast on Monday. A storm has to have sustained winds of 39 miles per hour to become a tropical storm.

Forecasters are also watching a tropical wave that has moved off the west coast of Africa. We are a few weeks from the height of the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which is around September 10th.

Previously dubbed Invest 99L, this system has become a little better defined and the shower and thunderstorm activity has increased, allowing the upgrade to Tropical Depression Eight.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs through November 30.