Tropical storm likely to form in Gulf of Mexico

Tropical storm likely to form in Gulf of Mexico

Tropical storm likely to form in Gulf of Mexico

An area of disturbed weather in the Bay of Campeche now has a 60% chance to develop into a Tropical Depression or Tropical Storm by the end of the work week.

This system will move northeast over the next few days, battling some areas of higher wind shear in the Gulf which may inhibit or slow down development efforts.

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A tropical storm could affect high school and college football games scheduled for Friday and Saturday, and forecasters said storm surge could be a problem on the Florida coast from around Apalachicola to near Tampa. That will mean the heaviest rain and strongest winds stay offshore. Tropical storm watchings and warnings are already in effect, including for parts of Louisiana, Alabama and the Florida Gulf Coasts.

As always, forecasts for developing systems are less certain than for well-organized tropical storms or hurricanes, so changes are certainly possible.

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Some computer models have it moving into the Florida Panhandle Saturday morning and then across Georgia and the Carolinas.

Seas and surf will build over much of the Gulf of Mexico into the weekend with the most significant increase in waves and frequency and strength of rip currents throughout the Florida Gulf coast. If the forecast track pushes farther to the east, impacts will be limited to some rain.

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AccuWeather's prediction for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season, issued in April, was for 12-14 tropical storms, five to seven hurricanes and two to four major hurricanes. This is why it becomes more and more hard to sustain a tropical system in the winter season.

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