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It was calm at Miami Beach, where this man paddled, but stormy off South Carolina.
It was calm at Miami Beach, where this man paddled, but stormy off South Carolina.Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press/Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. - Tropical Storm Alberto hovered off the South Carolina and Georgia coasts Sunday, canceling tourist cruises, producing showers along the coast, and serving as a reminder that the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season is just around the corner.

The first storm of the season that officially begins June 1 was not expected to approach landfall on the Carolinas’ coast, but it had prompted a tropical storm watch and forecasters warned that it could produce high winds, heavy surf, rip currents, and scattered rain across the region.

“It’s making the closest approach to the coastline now, so the impacts shouldn’t be much different than what we are already seeing,’’ said Jonathan Lamb, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

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Alberto was named a tropical storm Saturday upon forming in the Atlantic.