Published: Sat, May 26, 2018
Research | By Derrick Holloway

Subtropical Storm Alberto forms; watches issued for U.S., Mexico, Cuba

Subtropical Storm Alberto forms; watches issued for U.S., Mexico, Cuba

Hurricane season officially begins next Friday.

Rain chances are at 70 percent to 80 percent for portions of Florida throughout the Memorial Day weekend.

Alberto developed one week before the official June 1 start of the Atlantic hurricane season, but the right ingredients for a storm can still come together in May.

"Locally heavy rainfall is forecast across western Cuba and over much of Florida and the northern Gulf coast into early next week", senior hurricane specialist Stacy Stewart said in Friday's tropical weather outlook. This means tropical storm force winds of 39 mph or greater are possible within 48 hours.

Subtropical Storm Alberto forms; watches issued for U.S., Mexico, Cuba
Subtropical Storm Alberto forms; watches issued for U.S., Mexico, Cuba

While the track of Alberto seems fairly set at this point, how the storm's intensity develops will be important in how our weather plays out this weekend.

Alberto's winds remained at 40 miles per hour and the barometric pressure had not changed from 1005mb.

An event in South Florida was canceled as a result of the expected rain, as well.

Since 1995, the Atlantic and Caribbean have seen "very active" seasons, said Bell, as a decades-long climate trend in the Atlantic Ocean has kept water temperatures warmer, contributing to a higher number of storms.

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A FLOOD WATCH will take effect Saturday afternoon and extend through Sunday. Similar rain totals are possible from southeastern Louisiana to central Georgia, with the coasts of Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle in a bullseye to receive the most rain. The hurricane center said up to 12 inches of rain was possible across the Florida Keys and southern and southwestern Florida.

As far as strength of the storm, the odds are getting a little better that this could become a weak tropical storm. Now it seems that is likely within the next five days as it tracks north over the Yucatán Peninsula into the Gulf of Mexico.

There's also a strong threat of rip currents from Florida to Louisiana.

The National Weather Service said there was a 90 percent chance of it becoming a subtropical or tropical cyclone in the Gulf by the weekend. Southern Alabama and MS and the western Florida panhandle could see as much as 1 foot.

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These rains could produce life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.

Make sure you've got Live Alert 19 if you're traveling to the coast this weekend for the latest advisories, radar imagery, and any severe weather alerts if they're issued.

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