Storm Alberto: Florida and MS declare states of emergency

Storm Alberto: Florida and MS declare states of emergency

The satellite shows that Alberto is somewhat disorganized, with all of the thunderstorm activity east of the center of circulation.

Alberto as of 1pm Saturday remains a subtropical storm, but is forecast to transition to all tropical by the end of the day.

It's also more hard for forecasters to model their exact path, National Weather Service meteorologist Robert Ricks said.

Rainfall amounts of 3 to 7 inches are forecast across the Florida Keys and south Florida. First Alert Weather expects, on average, two to five inches of rainfall through Tuesday, with some higher totals possible near the coast and west of the Apalachicola River. Some areas could see up to 15 inches or rain.

Tommy Whitlock said sandbagging has become a regular event in his life because he lives next to a creek.

"All Alabamians should take time to be prepared for the potential of significant flooding", Ivey said in a statement. It became a tropical storm that meandered off the cast coast of Georgia and SC.

The storm will reportedly grow in strength until it reaches the northern Gulf Coast at some point on Monday night. The NWS said waves as high as 18 feet could pound the popular Gulf beaches in Baldwin County, Alabama, and northwestern Florida on Monday, bringing with it deadly rip currents.

Alberto approaching Cuba as it begins to make turn north

A storm surge watch and a tropical storm watch are in effect for Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties, the National Weather Service in New Orleans advises.

Alberto was still a minimal tropical storm as of Saturday with winds of 40 miles per hour. In contrast to a tropical storm or hurricane, where the strongest winds are at the center, a subtropical storm can have the most powerful winds far from the core.

Regardless of its path and intensity, Alberto expected to bring heavy rains of more than 10 inches and flash flooding to western Cuba and southern Florida, the National Hurricane Center said. Storm surge watches also have been issued for parts of the Gulf Coast, for a possible surge ranging from 2 to 4 feet. There were no immediate reports of emergencies.

The weather service and local officials urge residents not to attempt to drive through flooded streets.

A hotel owner in Panama City Beach, Florida, tells the Panama City News Herald that her familys five hotels are normally full on Memorial Day weekend.

Heavy rains are the biggest concern as they may lead to extremely serious flash and river flooding.

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