Tropical storm makes for rainy week in Columbia

Subtropical Storm Alberto was slowly making its way toward the Florida Panhandle Monday morning, coming within 50 miles of Panama City with winds of 60 mph and expected to make landfall Monday afternoon, according to the National Hurricane Center's 11 a.m. advisory.

A storm surge warning was in place from the Suwannee River to Navarre, Florida, and a tropical storm warning covered from the Suwannee River to the border of MS and Alabama. Expect similar conditions in North Alabama on Tuesday as the center of the storm moves overhead; a Flash Flood Watch is in effect though noon Wednesday.

Forecasters had feared the storm could bring risky high water to southern coastal states and possible tornadoes.

Tornadoes are also possible tonight over parts of Georgia and southeast Alabama.

Alberto, the first named Atlantic storm of 2018, spun up days before the formal June 1 start of the hurricane season.

Up to 1 inch of rainfall is possible area wide, with some locally higher amounts possible. Eventually the upper low will act to pull Alberto back to the North-northwest later Sunday.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Tuesday that as Alberto's weakening system moves inland Wednesday, it still remains a potential menace.


Although it will be drier rain-wise, the humidity will be inching upward, which means heat indices will climb to near 100 degrees Tuesday afternoon.

Many may see some tropical storm force wind gusts along the coast but not necessarily sustained winds. Storm surge flooding was less of a concern because Alberto's arrival would not coincide with high tide, he said.

An official from the National Weather Service warns that even after Subtropical Storm Alberto passes, there's still a risk for rip currents. Flooding will be a concern for the Gulf Coast and as far north as IN where Flash Flood Watches have been issued.

Because of the predicted landfall area, Lee County and surrounding areas could potentially experience "tropical weak tornadoes", Allen said, because of the county's location in relation to the storm.

Rain across the Valley has been scattered in the past week with some mountainous areas getting heavy rains in East Tennessee and Western North Carolina.

In late May 2016, Tropical Storm Bonnie hit parts of the Southeastern United States and the Bahamas, costing more than $640,000 in damage and causing two deaths. "We have had a few trees down".


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