June 22, 2012 Leave a comment
Good Friday evening to you! We’ve been watching an area of low pressure in the southern Gulf of Mexico for days now, and this system is gradually becoming better organized. I expect the low to develop into tropical storm Debby sometime on Saturday, as the environment gets favorable for tropical development. Model data is shifting back to the west again, so we will start to look towards a possible Texas landfall early next week.
The low is moving north now and will gradually get closer to the Alabama Gulf Coast, with outer rain bands impacting the area through the weekend. If you have plans to the LA, MS, AL or Florida Panhandle this weekend through Tuesday, you can expect on and off showers and storms, with mostly cloudy skies. Winds will gust to 35 or 40 out of the east at times due to a tight pressure gradient between the surface low to the south and a developing high to the north. It will not rain all weekend along the coast, but scattered showers and storms are possible at any point. Waves will grow large, with a high rip current threat anywhere in the central and eastern Gulf Coast. At this point, there are no indications of a direct landfall along the northern Gulf Coast. Either the ridge will force the storm towards Texas or the trough will pull the storm east late in the weekend and early next week. It will be a storm worth watching for anyone along the coast.
Here in central Alabama, we will notice some clouds from time to time, but I expect us to be far enough north of the center to remain rain free and very hot. Highs will reach the upper 90s through the weekend. We will notice a nice east breeze developing on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. The breeze will help the very hot conditions feel a little more bearable; especially during the morning and evening hours. Stay tuned for more updates through the weekend. Here’s the latest from the National Hurricane Center:
SATELLITE IMAGERY AND SURFACE OBSERVATIONS INDICATE THAT THE CIRCULATION ASSOCIATED WITH THE LARGE SURFACE LOW PRESSURE AREA LOCATED ABOUT 100 MILES NORTH OF THE NORTHEASTERN TIP OF THE YUCATAN PENINSULA HAS CONTINUED TO BECOME BETTER DEFINED. SURFACE PRESSURES ARE STILL FALLING ACROSS THE AREA…AND SHOWER AND THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY HAS BEEN STEADILY INCREASING OVER MUCH OF THE CENTRAL AND EASTERN GULF OF MEXICO TODAY. ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS
ARE EXPECTED TO REMAIN CONDUCIVE FOR A TROPICAL DEPRESSION TO FORM DURING THE NEXT DAY OR SO AS THIS LARGE DISTURBANCE DRIFTS SLOWLY NORTHWARD. THIS SYSTEM HAS A HIGH CHANCE…80 PERCENT…OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS. INTERESTS ALONG THE UNITED STATES GULF COAST SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF THIS DISTURBANCE THROUGH THE WEEKEND. HEAVY RAINS AND LOCALIZED FLOODING ARE POSSIBLE ACROSS THE YUCATAN PENINSULA…WESTERN CUBA…AND SOUTHERN FLORIDA THROUGH SATURDAY.
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