Tropical Development Likely in the Gulf by Monday


Forecasters warned Gulf Coast residents Saturday to keep an eye on the tropics, where a disturbance threatened to become Tropical Storm Michael later in the weekend.

At 8 p.m. Friday, forecasters said the system was producing rainy weather from Central America across the western Caribbean to Hispaniola. In five days, those chances go up to 90 percent.

Harrison County Emergency Manager Rupert Lacy warned Friday afternoon that tides are expected to be above-normal ahead of any possible tropical depression because of persistent onshore winds of 15-20 miles per hour.

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It's time to really start paying attention to the disturbance in the western Caribbean as most models are showing development with a track into the Gulf next week. At the very least, the Florida Peninsula could expect breezy conditions, increased rain chances and the potential for localized flooding. However, temperatures will remain well above October averages over the next several days with highs remaining well into the 80s around the piedmont and in the 70s for the mountains. The counterclockwise flow around that system will pull deep tropical moisture around it as it approaches Florida mid week.

"Regardless, it still looks like a wet and stormy pattern through at least mid week, and it will be something that will be watched closely over the coming days", meteorologists wrote in their morning forecast.