Forecast: Alberto leaves clouds, rain in its wake for Tampa Bay


Memorial Day along the Gulf Coast has been dominated by Subtropical Storm Alberto which will make landfall near Panama City Monday morning, bringing an abundance of rain to parts of the Florida Panhandle.

South Florida remains under a Flood Watch through Sunday night as Subtropical Storm Alberto continues to drop relentless rain across South Florida and the eastern Gulf Coast.

Subtropical Storm Alberto - the first named storm of the 2018 hurricane season - prompted Florida, Alabama and MS to launch emergency preparations Saturday.

Florida Governor Rick Scott issued an emergency notice for all of the state's 67 counties.

Alberto was also forecast to bring storm swells of about 2 to 4 feet (60-120 cm) to low-lying areas that were "likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions".

"Locally heavy rainfall will be possible, but the pattern evolution is far from certain at this time", said the weather service's Albany office.

Here in the Bay State, meteorologist Matt Doody with the National Weather Service in Boston said the remnants of Alberto will likely be seen as early as next week.

Stay with Storm Team 3 as we track Alberto this holiday weekend and be sure to download the free WSAV weather app. Subtropical storms can develop into tropical storms, which in turn can strengthen into hurricanes.That tropical moisture will make its way into North Carolina Monday and Tuesday.

A tropical storm warning expired for Cuba's western Pinar del Rio province, where heavy rains could trigger flash floods and mudslides, the National Hurricane Centre said.

Alabama has also declared a state of emergency.

Franklin County, which is in the Florida Panhandle, issued mandatory evacuations for its barrier islands, Reuters reported.

"Heavy rains and gusty winds continue to spread northward over Florida", tweeted the account.

Subtropical storm Alberto's course shifted slightly westward as it approached the Gulf Coast on Sunday.

Alberto got an early jump on the 2018 hurricane season, which doesn't officially start until June 1. The storm has maximum sustained winds of 50 miles per hour and the NHC says it is moving north-northwest at 12 miles per hour. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released a hurricane season forecast Thursday that calls for 10 to 16 named storms, with five to nine hurricanes.

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for an area stretching from MS to North Carolina that is home to millions of people.