Low-lying South Tampa awaits possible Elsa flooding

Flood-prone Bayshore Boulevard was relatively dry Tuesday night ahead of Hurricane Elsa, though the worst of the rain and storm surge was expected to come overnight.

Tampa Electric Company began to report thousands without power in parts of South Tampa early Wednesday morning. Nearly 3,5000 were without service around 1:30 a.m. according to TECO's online outage map.

Forecasters say 3 to 5 feet of storm surge is possible along the state’s west coast, including the shores of Tampa Bay.

Mayor Castor is watching the storm from the city of Tampa’s emergency operations center just north of downtown. All of the senior city staff and department heads will be there all night.

Bayshore is one of the areas officials always watch very closely, along with Dale Mabry and South Tampa, the areas that often flood when it rains.

RELATED: Elsa regains hurricane strength ahead of Florida landfall