Friday, 21 September, 2018

Tropical storm makes for rainy week in Columbia

Tropical storm makes for rainy week in Columbia Tropical storm makes for rainy week in Columbia
Anna Jefferson | 28 May, 2018, 23:15

A tropical storm warning remains in effect for Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties, as does a storm surge watch.

Alberto is expected to produce heavy rainfall and flooding over western Cuba, South Florida and the Florida Keys, the National Hurricane Center said Sunday.

For the actual Memorial Day holiday, we expect only a few scattered showers and storms to develop during the midday and afternoon hours, especially near and east of I-81.

At 11 p.m. EDT Saturday, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said Alberto was about 400 miles (645 kilometers) south of Apalachicola, Florida, and moving north-northeast at 13 mph (20 kph). The governors of Florida, Alabama and MS all declared states of emergency ahead of the storm. It is still a subtropical storm, meaning that it does not have all of the characteristics of a purely tropical system and is more of a hybrid cyclone. Alberto will become the ninth named storm to make landfall on the continental United States before June 1 on record.

The National Hurricane Center has also warned of the possibility of tornadoes "from northern Florida into central and southern Georgia, southern SC, and southeastern Alabama". "So how often can you say you rode a storm out?"

While it is now categorized as a Subtropical Storm, meteorologists expect it to pick up speed as it makes its way through the Gulf of Mexico over the weekend.

A subtropical storm like Alberto has a less defined and cooler centre than a tropical storm, and its strongest winds are found farther from its centre. Its winds, which had strengthened overnight to 65 miles per hour, were down to 60 miles per hour as of 11 a.m.

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A tornado threat exists in the front-right quadrants of the storm, which today is northern Florida and most of Georgia and SC.

The risk of flash flooding was only marginal -5 percent- in the Lowcountry as of Monday morning.

Storms in the Gulf are closely watched because 5 percent of USA natural gas and 17 percent of crude-oil production comes out of the region, according to the Energy Information Administration.

Florida, Alabama and MS declare states of emergency; Jonathan Serrie reports from Florida.

Waters off the eastern and northern Gulf Coast are expected to be rough through Tuesday.

"It's maintained its strength and wind speeds overnight, and it looks like it's headed for landfall at Panama City, (Florida)", said David Roth, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland.

Heavy downpours were expected to begin lashing parts of Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama on Sunday.

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