Northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan could be in for a breezy drenching by Thursday, or showers at the very least, as the remnants of Hurricane Frances head northward.
The National Hurricane Center yesterday projected Frances, after crossing the Florida peninsula, would become a tropical storm and move northwesterly across the Gulf of Mexico and the Florida Panhandle into Alabama and Mississippi.
Frances will weaken to a depression and in east-central Mississippi will take a northerly path into western Tennessee. It will shift to the northeast then and wind up in northwest Ohio, crossing the Indiana border about 2 p.m. Thursday, according to predictions last night by the hurricane center.
Rain associated with Frances could extend from Arkansas, Missouri, and Iowa to western North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania.
"Some other computer models say it may be farther east," said Frank Kieltyka, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Cleveland. "The real moisture associated with it won't get into Ohio until more during the day Wednesday especially."
Winds could reach 25 mph, but the amount of rain is hard to predict, Mr. Kieltyka said. It likely won't equal the 8 inches that fell on parts of northeast Ohio after Hurricane Fran in September, 1996, he said.