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Potential Tropical Cyclone Three Reaches Tropical Storm Force

Potential Tropical Cyclone Three reached tropical storm force south of Louisiana on Friday afternoon. At 2:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Potential Tropical Cyclone Three (03L) was located at latitude 27.3°N and longitude 91.1°W which put it about 165 miles (265 km) south of Morgan City, Louisiana. Potential Tropical Cyclone Three was moving toward the north at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 1007 mb.

A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from Morgan City, Louisiana to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line, Florida including New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas. The Tropical Storm Warning included Biloxi, Mississippi, Mobile, Alabama and Pensacola, Florida.

The circulation around Potential Tropical Cyclone Three strengthened on Friday afternoon. A C-MAN station (BURL1) at Southwest Pass, Louisiana with an anemometer at a height of 38 meters reported a sustained wind speed of 44 m.p.h. (71 km/h) and a wind gust of 51 m.p.h. (82 km/h). The sustained wind speed was equivalent to a speed of 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) at a standard observation height of 10 meters.

The circulation around Potential Tropical Cyclone Three continued to consist of a broad low pressure system at the surface. The strongest winds were occurring northeast of the center of the broad low pressure system. A high pressure system southeast of the U.S. was contributing to a stronger pressure gradient in that region. The stronger pressure gradient was causing winds to blow at tropical storm force. The winds were weaker in the other parts of Potential Tropical Cyclone Three. There were several smaller circulations revolving counterclockwise around the broader Potential Tropical Cyclone Three. One of the smaller circulations was south of Louisiana and another one was over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico. The strongest thunderstorms were occurring in bands northeast of the broad center and in a long band on the eastern side of the circulation.

Potential Tropical Cyclone Three will move through an environment slightly favorable for intensification during the next few hours. Potential Tropical Cyclone Three will move over an area where the Sea Surface Temperatures are near 29°C. It will move between an upper level low over eastern Texas and an upper level ridge over the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The low and ridge will produce southwesterly winds that will blow toward the top of Potential Tropical Cyclone Three. Those winds will cause moderate vertical wind shear and the shear will inhibit intensification. The upper level ridge will contribute to upper level divergence that will pump mass to the east of Potential Tropical Cyclone Three. There will also be drier air over the northwestern Gulf of Mexico, which will make it difficult for thunderstorms to develop in that area. Potential Tropical Cyclone Three could intensify a little more during the next six hours. If a well defined surface center of circulation develops, the system could be designated as a tropical storm.

Potential Tropical Cyclone Three will move around the western end of the high pressure system southeast of the U.S. The high pressure system will steer it toward the north-northeast during the next 24 hours. On its anticipated track Potential Tropical Cyclone Three will make landfall in southeastern Louisiana on Friday night. The system will move across southeastern Mississippi on Saturday and it could reach Alabama by Saturday night. It will bring gusty winds to southeast Louisiana and the coasts of Mississippi and Alabama. The system could cause a storm surge of 3 to 5 feet (1.0 to 1.5 meters) along parts of the coast. It will drop locally heavy rain when it moves inland. Heavy rain could cause flash floods over parts of the southeastern U.S. Flash Flood Watches were in effect for parts of southeastern Mississippi, Alabama, northwestern Florida, and western Georgia. There may also be enough low level wind shear to produce tornadoes when the rainbands in the eastern side of the circulation when it moves inland.

Hurricane Zeta Hits New Orleans

Hurricane Zeta hit New Orleans, Louisiana and the coast of Mississippi on Wednesday evening. At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Hurricane Zeta was located at latitude 31.5°N and longitude 88.7°W which put it about 45 miles (75 km) northeast of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Zeta was moving toward the northeast at 31 m.p.h. (50 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 978 mb.

A Hurricane Warning remained in effect for the portion of the coast from the Mouth of the Pearl River to the Mississippi/Alabama border. A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from the Mississippi/Alabama border to the Walton/Bay County Line in Florida.

Hurricane Zeta made landfall on the coast of Louisiana near Grand Isle late on Wednesday afternoon. The eye of Zeta passed over New Orleans before moving northeast into southern Mississippi. The strongest winds in Hurricane Zeta occurred in the eastern half of the circulation. A NOAA National Ocean Service (NOS) station at Shell Beach Louisiana (SHBL1) reported a sustained wind speed of 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and a wind gust of 101 m.p.h. (163 km/h). A NOAA NOS station at the Bay Waveland Yacht Club, Mississippi (WYCM6) reported a wind speed of 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and a wind gust of 103 m.p.h. (167 km/h). The National Weather Service (NWS) office at the airport in New Orleans (KMSY) reported a Peak Wind of 71 m.p.h. (115 km/h). A station in Biloxi, Mississippi (KBIX) reported a sustained wind speed of 64 m.p.h. (104 km/h) and a wind gust of 87 m.p.h. (141 km/h). A station in Mobile, Alabama (KMOB) reported a sustained wind speed of 48 m.p.h. (78 km/h) and a wind gust of 91 m.p.h. (146 km/h).

There were reports of significant storm surges along the coast of Mississippi. There were also reports of widespread power outages in southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi.

Hurricane Zeta will move rapidly northeastward across Alabama during the night. The center of Zeta will be over northwestern Georgia by Thursday morning. Hurricane Zeta will weaken to a tropical storm during the night, but it will be capable of causing additional power outages. Zeta will also drop locally heavy rain. Flash Flood Watches were in effect for the area from Alabama to western Virginia. Zeta will eventually merge with a cold front and make a transition to an extratropical cyclone. The extratropical cyclone could contribute to snow that will fall over the northeastern U.S.

Tropical Storm Sally Drops Heavy Rain on Southeast U.S.

Tropical Storm Sally dropped heavy rain over parts of the southeastern U.S. on Wednesday afternoon.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Storm Sally was located at latitude 31.2°N and longitude 86.8°W which put it about 85 miles (135 km) west of Dothan, Alabama.  Sally was moving toward the northeast at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 990 mb.

A Tropical Storm Warning remained in effect for the portion of the coast from the Alabama/Florida border to Indian Pass, Florida.

The winds to tropical storm force were occurring in bands over the Gulf of Mexico in the southern part of Tropical Storm Sally.  Most of the winds over land were blowing at less than tropical storm force.

Hurricane Sally made landfall near Gulf Shores, Alabama on Wednesday morning as a Category 2 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale.  A NOAA C-MAN station at Ft. Morgan, Alabama measured a sustained wind speed 98 m.p.h. (158 km/h) and a peak wind gust of 121 m.p.h. (195 km/h) when the western eyewall passed over it.  Another weather station at Bon Secour, Alabama measured a sustained wind speed of 71 m.p.h. (115 km/h).  There were reports of widespread power outages in Alabama.  The Pensacola Naval Air Station reported a wind gust of 82 m.p.h. (132 km/h).

The wind pushed the water toward the coast and there was a storm surge over the barrier sialnds and along the coast of Alabama and northwest Florida.  Since the eye of Sally passed east of Mobile, Alabama, northerly winds pushed the water out of Mobile Bay and the water level dropped several feet.  Heavy rain fell north and east of the center of Sally and creeks an rivers were rising quickly in parts of southern Alabama and northwestern Florida.

Tropical Storm Sally will move northeast across Southeast Alabama on Wednesday night.  Sally will be over Georgia on Thursday and it will be over South Carolina on Thursday night.  Tropical Storm Sally will continue to drop heavy rain over those areas and Flash Flood Watches were in effect for parts of northwestern Florida, southern Alabama, Georgia, western North Carolina and western South Carolina.

Elsewhere, Hurricane Teddy was on a track that could take it near Bermuda in a few days.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Hurricane Teddy was located at latitude 17.5°N and longitude 50.8°W which put it about 710 miles (1145 km) east of the Lesser Antilles.  Teddy was moving toward the northwest at 13 m.p.h. (20 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 973 mb.

Hurricane Sally Makes Landfall Near Gulf Shores

The center of Hurricane Sally officially made landfall near Gulf Shores, Alabama on Wednesday morning.  At 6:00 a.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Hurricane Sally was located at latitude 30.3°N and longitude 87.7°W which put it near Gulf Shores, Alabama.  Sally was moving toward the north-northeast at 3 m.p.h. (5 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 105 m.p.h. (165 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 125 m.p.h. (200 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure as 965 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect from the Mississippi/Alabama border to the Okaloosa/Walton County line in Florida.  Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from the Mouth of the Pearl River to the Mississippi/Alabama border and from the Okaloosa/Walton County Line to Indian Pass, Florida.

Hurricane Sally strengthened to Category 2 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale on Tuesday night as it ground its way slowly toward the Gulf Coast.  Winds to hurricane force extended out 40 miles (65 km) from the center of Sally.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out 130 miles (210 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Hurricane Sally was 17.8.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 11.2 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 29.0.  Hurricane Sally was capable of causing regional serious damage.  The winds were pushing water toward the coast and a storm surge of 9 to 12 feet (3 to 4 meters) was possible.

Hurricane Sally will move slowly northeast across Northwest Florida and Southeast Alabama.  Sally will slowly weaken as it moves inland, but it will cause widespread power outages in those areas.  Since Hurricane Sally will move slowly, it will drop heavy rain.  Flash Flood Watches extend from the Gulf Coast to Georgia and North Carolina.

Elsewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, Teddy rapidly intensified into a Category 2 hurricane, Hurricane Paulette passes south of Newfoundland and Tropical Storm Vicky moved farther away from the Cabo Verde Islands.  At 5:00 a.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Hurricane Teddy was located at latitude 15.4°N and longitude 49.0°W which put it about 820 miles (1315 km) east of the Lesser Antilles.  Teddy was moving toward the northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 976 mb.

At 5:00 a.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Hurricane Paulette was located at latitude 41.9°N and longitude 49.1°W which put it about 385 miles (620 km) south-southeast of Cape Race, Newfoundland.  Paulette was moving toward the east-northeast at 29 m.p.h. (46 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 966 mb.

At 5:00 a.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Storm Vicky was located at latitude 21.6°N and longitude 33.9°W which put the center about 755 miles (1215 km) west-northwest of the Cabo Verde Islands.  Vicky was moving toward the west-northwest at 9 m.p.h. (15 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were ind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1004 mb.

Hurricane Sally Continues to Grind Slowly Toward Mobile

Hurricane Sally continued to grind its way slowly north toward Mobile on Tuesday afternoon.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Sally located at latitude 29.5°N and longitude 88.1°W which put it about 85 miles (135 km) south of Mobile, Alabama.  Sally was moving toward the north at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 100 m.p.h. (120 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 979 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion coast from Bay St. Louis, Mississippi to Navarre, Florida.  Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Grand Isle, Louisiana to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi and from Navarre to Indian Pass, Florida.

Hurricane Sally did not change a lot on Tuesday.  A ragged eye with a diameter of 30 miles (48 km) was at the center of Sally.  The eye was surrounded by a broken ring of thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Hurricane Sally.  The strongest rainbands were in the northern half of the hurricane.  Bands in the southern half of the circulation consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Storms near the center generated upper level divergence which pumped mass away to the northeast of the hurricane.  Winds to hurricane force extended out 40 miles (65 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out 130 miles (210 km) from the center.

Hurricane Sally was moving around the western end of a subtropical high pressure system over the western Atlantic Ocean.  The steering winds around Sally were weak, but they were pushing the hurricane slowly toward the north.  On its anticipated track Hurricane Sally will make landfall near Mobile Bay on Wednesday morning.  Any small wobble to the left or to the right could affect the place of landfall.  An upper level trough over the western U.S. will move east during the next couple of days.  The trough will turn Sally more toward the east after it moves inland.

The intensity of Hurricane Sally may not change much in the 12 hours until it makes landfall.  Sally will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  However, the circulation will pull drier air into the southern part of the hurricane.  In addition, the eastern edge of the approaching upper level trough will produce some vertical wind shear.  The positive impact of warm water will be balanced by the negative impacts of drier air and slight shear.  So, the environment is likely to be neutral for intensification.  Hurricane Sally will start to weaken after the center moves inland.

Hurricane Sally was already producing water rises along the Central Gulf Coast.  A storm surge of up to 6 to 9 feet (2 to 3 meters) could occur near and to the east of where the center makes landfall.  Sally will cause mostly minor wind damage.  A prolonged period of strong winds could cause widespread power outages over southwestern Alabama and northwestern Florida.  Since Hurricane Sally will be moving slowly, it will drop heavy rain over southern Alabama and northwestern Florida.  Flash flooding will be likely in areas that receive the heaviest rainfall.

Elsewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, Hurricane Paulette continued to speed away from Bermuda, Tropical Storm Teddy was well on its way to becoming a hurricane and Tropical Storm Vicky was weakening over the eastern Atlantic.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Paulette was located at latitude 39.5°N and longitude 55.0°W which put it about 740 miles (1190 km) northeast of Bermuda.  Paulette was moving toward the east-northeast at 30 m.p.h. (48 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 970 mb.

At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Teddy was located at latitude 14.6°N and longitude 47.9°W which put it about 895 miles (1440 km) east of the Lesser Antilles.  Teddy was moving toward the west-northwest at 13 m.p.h. (20 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 997 mb.

At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Vicky was located at latitude 21.2°N and longitude 32.1°W which put it about 640 miles (1030 km) northwest of the Cabo Verde Islands.  Vicky was moving toward the west-northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1004 mb.

Sally Rapidly Strengthens to a Hurricane, Paulette Hits Bermuda

Former Tropical Storm Sally rapidly strengthened into a hurricane on Monday morning and Hurricane Paulette hit Bermuda.  At 12:30 p.m. EDT on Monday the center of Hurricane Sally was located at latitude 28.7°N and longitude 87.0°W which put it about 130 miles (210 km) east-southeast of the Mouth of the Mississippi River.  Sally was moving toward the west-northwest at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 90 m.p.h. (145 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 110 m.p.h. (175 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 986 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from Morgan City, Louisiana to the Alabama/Florida border including New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain, and Lake Maurepas.  Tropical Storms Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Intracoastal City to Morgan City Louisiana and from the Alabama/Florida border to Indian Pass, Florida.  A Tropical Storm Watch was in effect for the portion of the coast from Indian River Pass to the Ochlockonee River, Florida.

Formerly Tropical Storm Sally intensified rapidly on Monday morning.  A circular eye formed at the center of Hurricane Sally.  The eye was surrounded by a ring of very strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Sally.  Storms near the core generated strong upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the hurricane in all directions.  Winds to hurricane force extend out 25 miles (40 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extend out 130 miles (210 km) from the center.

Hurricane Sally will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 18 hours.  Sally will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  It will move through a region where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Hurricane Sally will continue to intensify and it is likely to strengthen rapidly.  Sally could intensify into a major hurricane during the next 24 hours.

Hurricane Sally will move around the western end of a subtropical high pressure system the extends from the western Atlantic Ocean over the southeastern U.S.  The high will steer Sally toward the west-northwest during the next 12 hours.  Hurricane Sally will move more toward the north on Tuesday when it reaches the western end of the high.  Sally will move more slowly when it reaches the western end of the high pressure system.  On its anticipated track Hurricane Sally will approach the Mouth of the Mississippi River on Monday night.  Sally could make landfall on the coast of Mississippi on Tuesday,

Hurricane Sally will bring strong winds to southeastern Louisiana and the coast of Mississippi.  Sally could generate a storms surge of 9 to 15 feet (3 to 5 meters) along the coast.  Hurricane Sally will also drop very heavy rain and flash floods are likely.

Elsewhere, Hurricane Paulette hit Bermuda on Monday morning.  There were reports of minor wind damage and power outages.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Monday the center of Hurricane Paulette was located at latitude 33.2°N and longitude 64.8°W which put it about 65 miles (105 km) north of Bermuda.  Paulette was moving toward the north at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 970 mb.  A Hurricane Warning remained in effect for Bermuda.

Tropical Storm Barry Brings Wind and Water to Central Gulf Coast

Tropical Storm Barry brought wind and water to the central Gulf Coast on Saturday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday the center of Tropical Storm Barry was located at latitude 31.0°N and longitude 93.0°W which put it about 35 miles (55 km) southwest of Alexandria, Louisiana.  Barry was moving toward the north-northwest at 8 m.p.h. (13 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1002 mb.

Tropical Storm Warnings were still in effect for the portion of the coast from Grand Isle to Cameron, Louisiana, and for New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas.  Several weather stations on the coast of Louisiana were still reporting sustained winds to tropical storm force on Saturday night.

Tropical Storm Barry strengthened into a hurricane prior to making landfall near Intracoastal City, Louisiana on Saturday afternoon.  Then an upper level ridge centered over Texas strengthened after Barry became a hurricane.  The ridge produced north-northeasterly winds at 25 m.p.h. (40 km/h) which blew over the top of former Hurricane Barry.  Those winds created strong vertical wind shear and they blew the top of the circulation south of the lower part of the circulation.  By Saturday night the lower level circulation was over southwestern Louisiana and the top of the circulation was over the northwestern Gulf of Mexico.  Since the lower part of the circulation did not extend as high in the atmosphere, rain near the center of Tropical Storm Barry was relatively light.  Heavier rain fell in bands on the eastern side of Barry.  Heavy rain caused localized flooding in the area around Mobile, Alabama and along the coast of Mississippi.

Tropical Storm Barry did cause minor wind damage over portions of southern Louisiana.  There were reports of downed trees and widespread power outages.  The wind pushed water toward the coast in the eastern half of the circulation and Barry generated a storm surge of 6 feet (2 meters) in several locations.  There was also a rise in the water level along the northern shore of Lake Pontchartrain.

Tropical Storm Barry is forecast to move northward over western Louisiana on Sunday.  The water level along the coast should gradually decrease while Barry moves farther inland and weakens.  Rainfall could increase in bands in the eastern side of the circulation on Sunday where the wind will transport moist air from the Gulf of Mexico over Louisiana and Mississippi.  Flash Flood Watches continue for parts of Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi and Alabama.

Potential Tropical Development Over Northern Gulf of Mexico

The potential exists for the development of a tropical cyclone over the northern Gulf of Mexico this week.  A low pressure system was over Georgia on Monday afternoon.  The low was drifting slowly southward, but it was forecast to move more toward the south-southwest during the next two days.  Several numerical models were predicting that the low pressure system would strengthen into a tropical depression or a tropical storm after it moves over the northern Gulf of Mexico later this week.  The National Hurricane Center was indicating that the low pressure system, currently designated as Invest 92L, had a 30% probability of developing into a tropical cyclone during the next two days and an 80% probability of developing into a tropical cyclone during the next five days.

The low pressure system exhibited a surface circulation on Monday afternoon, but the wind speed was near 15 m.p.h. (25 km/h).  Bands of showers and thunderstorms formed during the daytime heating over land, but they weakened at night.  There was also a counterclockwise rotation in the lower and middle troposphere which may have been the remnants of a mesoscale convective vortex (MCV), which developed over the Middle Mississippi River Valley a few days ago.  The low was not generating upper level divergence on Monday afternoon.

If the low pressure system does move over the northern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday or Wednesday, it will move into an environment more favorable for the development of a tropical depression.  The Sea Surface Temperature of the water in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico is near 30°C.  The low pressure system will move southeast of an upper level ridge over the southern U.S.  The ridge will produce northeasterly winds, but the winds will be relatively weak and the vertical wind shear will not be too strong.  More thunderstorms are likely to develop when the low pressure system moves over the warm water.  If those thunderstorms generate upper level divergence that pumps mass away, then the surface pressure will decrease and a tropical depression will form.

The upper level ridge is forecast to steer the low pressure system toward the west after it moves over the Gulf of Mexico later this week.  On its anticipated track the low pressure system will move slowly toward the coast of Louisiana and Texas.  The future intensity of the system will be determined by how far the system moves into the Gulf of Mexico.  If the low pressure system takes a track along or near the north coast of the Gulf of Mexico, then it will likely become a tropical depression or a weak tropical storm.  Even if the low only strengthens into a tropical depression, it could drop heavy rain and the potential for flooding exists along the northern Gulf Coast.  If the low pressure system moves farther out into the Gulf of Mexico and remains over warm water for a longer period, then it might intensify into a hurricane.  Residents along the Gulf Coast should monitor this system carefully.

Tropical Storm Gordon Makes Landfall on the Gulf Coast.

Tropical Storm Gordon made landfall on the Gulf Coast near Pascagoula, Mississippi on Tuesday night.  At 11:30 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Gordon was located at latitude 30.4°N and longitude 88.4°W which put it about 30 miles (50 km) east of Biloxi, Mississippi.  Gordon was moving toward the northwest at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 70 m.p.h. (110 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 997 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from the Mouth of the Pearl River to the Alabama-Florida border.  A Tropical Storm Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from the Okaloosa-Walton County line to the Alabama-Florida border.

The circulation of Tropical Storm Gordon was asymmetrical.  The strongest bands of showers and thunderstorms were north and east of the center of circulation.  The strongest winds were occurring in those bands.  A C-MAN station on Dauphin Island, Alabama reported a sustained wind speed of 62 m.p.h. (100 km/h) and a wind gust of 72 m.p.h. (117 km/h).  The winds were much weaker south and west of the center of Tropical Storm Gordon and there was little rain in those parts of the tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Gordon will start to weaken as the center moves inland.  Gordon will continue to move around the western end of a high pressure system over the western Atlantic Ocean.  The high will steer Tropical Storm Gordon toward the northwest during the next day or two.  On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Gordon will move across southern Mississippi on Wednesday and over Arkansas on Thursday.  The wind will be strong enough to cause minor damage and it will cause some power outages.  Locally heavy rain and the potential for flash floods are the greater risks.  Flash Flood Warnings were in effect for parts of West Florida and Southwest Alabama.  Flash Flood Watches were in effect for Mississippi and Southeastern Arkansas.

Elsewhere over the tropical Atlantic Ocean, Hurricane Florence was continuing to intensify east of the northern Leeward Islands.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Florence was located at latitude 20.7°N and longitude 43.9°W which put it about 1515 miles (2440 km) east-southeast of Bermuda.  Florence was moving toward the west-northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 976 mb.

Tropical Storm Gordon Nears Gulf Coast

Tropical Storm Gordon moved closer to the Gulf Coast of the U.S. on Tuesday morning.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Gordon was located at latitude 28.5°N and longitude 86.8°W which put it about 145 miles (235 km) east-southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River.  Gordon was moving toward the northwest at 15 m.p.h. (24 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1001 mb.

A Hurricane Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from the mouth of the Pearl River to the Alabama-Florida border.  Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Grand Isle, Louisiana to the mouth of the Pearl River including Lake Pontchartrain and from the Alabama-Florida border to the Okaloosa-Walton County line in Florida.

The circulation of Tropical Storm Gordon appeared to be getting more organized on Tuesday morning.  More thunderstorms developed near the center of circulation.  Storms near the center were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the east of the tropical storm.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms north and east of the center were moving toward the Gulf Coast.  The bands southwest of the center consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 80 miles (130 km) from the center of circulation, but the winds were weaker in the southwestern quadrant of Tropical Storm Gordon.

Tropical Storm Gordon could strengthen into a hurricane before it makes landfall.  Gordon will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  An upper level trough over the southeastern U.S. was producing southwesterly winds which were blowing toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds were causing some vertical shear, but they will not be strong enough to prevent intensification.  The surface pressure decreased slightly on Tuesday morning.  Increased friction near the coast could cause the circulation to tighten around the center, when Tropical Storm Gordon gets closer to the Gulf Coast.

Tropical Storm Gordon will move around the southwestern end of a subtropical high pressure system over the western Atlantic Ocean.  The high will steer Gordon in a general northwesterly direction during the next several days.  On its anticipated track the center of Hurricane Gordon is likely to make landfall on the northern Gulf Coast on Tuesday night.  Gordon will produce winds to near hurricane force at the coast.  It could cause a storm surge of 5 to 8 feet (1.5 to 2.5 meters) east of the center where the wind blows water toward the coast.  The highest storm surge will occur in bays and the mouths of streams and rivers where the shape of the coast funnels water into those areas.  Tropical Storm Gordon will also drop heavy rain over portions of northwest Florida, southwest Alabama, Mississippi and eastern Louisiana.  Locally heavy rain could create the potential for flash floods.

Elsewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, former Tropical Storm Florence strengthened into the third Atlantic hurricane of 2018.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Florence was located at latitude 19.7°N and longitude 42.5°W which put it about 1270 miles (2045 km) east-northeast of the Lesser Antilles.  Florence was moving toward the west-northwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 90 m.p.h. (145 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 990 mb.