Tropical Storm Maria is likely to reach hurricane strength on Sunday, prompting U.S. weather forecasters to issue warnings and watches for a string of Caribbean islands, some of which were battered by powerful Hurricane Irma less than two weeks before.

Separately, Hurricane Jose generated tropical storm watches for parts of the U.S. East Coast, but was projected to remain offshore, for now.

Maria was about 405 miles, or 655 kilometers, southeast of the Leeward Islands with maximum sustained winds of 65 miles, or 100 km, per hour at 2 p.m. EDT, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

“Strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours and Maria is expected to become a hurricane later today or tonight,” the forecaster said.

–CNBC contributed to this article.

Facebook Comments