Subtropical Storm Alberto still chugging toward Gulf

Pablo Tucker
May 26, 2018

Subtropical Storm Alberto - the first named storm of the 2018 hurricane season - was roiling parts of coastal Mexico and Cuba with rip currents and unsafe surf on Friday.

If it upgrades into a tropical storm with winds at or greater than 39 miles per hour, it will receive the name "Alberto".

Subtropical Storm Alberto formed in the western Caribbean this morning. As the center of circulation moves north of the Gulf Coast our rain chances will decrease, however, on and off showers should be expected through entire holiday.

The storm is expected to bring wet weather to South Florida through the Memorial Day weekend. The main threat from this system continues to be its heavy, flooding rain.

At the very least, several inches of torrential rain are likely across the Gulf states east of Texas. Alberto comes ahead of schedule: the six-month hurricane season doesnt begin until June 1.

Torrential rain, flooding and thunderstorms are likely across the Caribbean, the Gulf states and southern U.S. states even if a tropical storm does not materialise.

The National Hurricane Center predicts that Alberto could have sustained winds of 65 miles per hour - not far from hurricane-force - by Monday when it is approaching the coast near Mobile, Ala., and Biloxi, Miss.

A Storm Surge Watch has been issued for coastal Hancock, Harrison, and Jackson counties due to the potential for tides to rise 3 or more feet above normal.

As of Thursday at 8 a.m., forecasters predict that Sebastian and Vero Beach will get up to half an inch of rain between 4 and 7 p.m. when the storm makes it way into Florida.

"Instead of having warmer temperatures throughout its core, like a tropical storm, its upper levels are still quite cool, like what you'd typically see with winter and spring low pressure systems", said Will Ulrich, a meteorologist with the Weather Service in Melbourne. The rain is also expected to threaten building structures in low-lying areas.

The National Hurricane Centre said the early development does not necessarily mean we are in for a busy hurricane season.

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