Gulf coast on alert for tropical weather

Gulf coast on alert for tropical weather

By mid-week our attention will focus on the Gulf of Mexico.

A ridge of high pressure in the western Atlantic Ocean will help steer it northward over the Gulf of Mexico.

On Saturday, this effect was in play as a broad area of low pressure stretched across Central America - which sometimes can help spin up a storm.

"Residents and others with interests along the central or northeastern Gulf Coast should closely monitor the progress of the storm", Accuweather said in a forecast tonight.

A tropical storm was forming in the Caribbean Sea on Saturday and could reach the Carolinas by Thursday, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said in a 5 p.m. update. Western Cuba could see isolated maximum amounts of 12 inches, the center said. That being said, our impacts will be post-landfall and the storm will be weakening as it moves inland. This will increase the rain chances across the entire peninsula for the middle of the upcoming week.

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If sustained winds reach 39 miles per hour, the next name on the list of tropical storms is Michael.

Long range forecast data is a bit split on two different scenarios (or outcomes) for this disturbance, ranging from just an area of tropical moisture and heavy rain to potentially a tropical storm. However, the track, timing, and intensity of this system may easily change over the next few days.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Leslie continues to churn in the mid-Atlantic - and even though it is no threat to land, it will impact the US coast this weekend. It has a small chance to develop into either a subtropical or tropical storm.

That cold front responsible for the showers, will continue our temperature swings, sending us back to the lower 60s to round out the Columbus Day holiday weekend on Monday.

Hurricane season runs through November 30.

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