WAKEFIELD, Va. (Delmarva Now/WVEC) -- A storm at sea will skirt Virginia, but that doesn't mean the coast will escape the winds.

The storm will impact Hampton Roads and the Eastern Shore Friday and through the weekend, said Wayne Albright, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Wakefield, Virginia.

"You will get strong winds, west-northwest winds Friday night and north-northwest winds Saturday from 25 to 30 miles per hour," he said. "The storm moves away by the late weekend."

The offshore storm, he said, does not have anything to do with the wet weather we'll be seeing on Thursday.

Thursday is expected to be the rainiest day, with it being heavy at times. As we warm Thursday afternoon and conditions gradually become more conducive, we could even see a few thunderstorms.

The winds will start to pick up Thursday night, with wind speeds between 15 and 20 miles per hour in Virginia and gusts as high as 30 miles per hour.

On Friday wind speeds will be between 23 and 28 miles per hour, with wind gusts as high as 41 miles per hour.

The Coast Guard has issued a warning to mariners in the Mid-Atlantic to use extreme caution as the storm system passes through the region.

According to a forecast from the National Weather Service, the storm could bring potential winds in excess of 65 mph and seas exceeding 30 feet to certain offshore areas.

“Our primary concern is ensuring the safety of mariners,” said Lt. Cmdr. Wes Geyer, command center chief, 5th Coast Guard District. “We encourage all mariners to keep an eye on the weather and avoid putting themselves or their loved ones at risk as the storm passes off the coast.”

Here are a few additional tips to help mariners protect themselves, their families and their vessels:

  • Stay up-to-date on the weather as conditions can change suddenly and with little warning.
  • Secure electronic position indicating radio beacons. If unsecured, an EPIRB can break free from a boat and trigger an emergency signal to the Coast Guard.
  • Do not go out to sea in a recreational boat when a storm is approaching.
  • Contact local marinas to ask for advice about securing a vessel.
  • Ensure boating gear is properly stowed or tied down to avoid causing unnecessary searches by the Coast Guard and other first responders. Life jackets, life rafts and small non-powered vessels are some examples of boating equipment often found adrift following severe weather.

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