A hurricane watch has been issued for Florida’s Gulf Coast as Tropical Storm Adalia approaches
A hurricane watch has been issued for parts of Florida’s Gulf Coast as the state prepares Tropical Storm Idaliawhich is expected to intensify into a hurricane and make landfall this week.
The hurricane watch extends from Englewood to Indian Pass, including Tampa Bay. According to a National Hurricane Center update Sunday afternoon. In addition to the hurricane watch, a Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for the Florida Gulf Coast from Inglewood to Chokolosky and Dry Tortugas.
The hurricane center said the storm is currently located about 100 miles east of Cozumel, Mexico, moving at about 3 mph with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.
Forecasters expect Hurricane Idalia to slowly cross the Yucatan Channel in the next 24 to 36 hours, creating tropical storm conditions in the far eastern parts of Mexico’s Yucatán and the western tip of Cuba through Monday.
Idalia is expected to make landfall Wednesday morning near Big Bend, Florida, as a Category 2 hurricane.
“Hurricane strength is expected to strengthen, and Hurricane Idalia is expected to become a hurricane over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by early Tuesday,” the National Hurricane Center update read. Additional strengthening is likely as Idalia approaches the northeastern coast of the Gulf.
Hurricane Hunters They scan Idalia for data as the system ramps up.
The hurricane center noted in an earlier update that there was a “notable risk of rapid intensification” as the storm moved through the very warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Rapid intensification occurs when a storm’s maximum wind speed increases by 35 mph or more over a 24-hour period.
The hurricane center said 3 to 6 inches of rain was expected over western Cuba, the west coast of Florida, the Panhandle and southern Georgia, with a total of 10 inches isolated. Heavy rains could also reach parts of the Carolinas by Wednesday and Thursday.
The center warned that heavy rains could lead to flash floods, especially in western Cuba, the west coast of Florida, the Florida Panhandle and parts of the southeastern United States.
Life-threatening storm surges, torrential rains and hurricane-force winds are expected to hit Florida early Tuesday. The bulk of the storm is expected to move over parts of the southeast on Wednesday.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis urged Floridians to “heed the warnings of local officials” as the state prepares for Idalia’s arrival.
“Our Emergency Operations Center here in Tallahassee will move to Level 1, 24 hours a day, beginning at 7 a.m. EDT on Monday,” DeSantis said.
To prepare, 1,100 National Guardsmen have been mobilized, DeSantis said, and have access to 2,400 high-water vehicles and 12 aircraft for rescue and recovery efforts. The Florida Highway Patrol also has 300 soldiers ready to deploy.
According to the governor, electricity companies will start distributing employees on Monday.
DeSantis added that schools in Hernando County will be closed Monday through Wednesday.
A White House official told CNN that President Joe Biden has been briefed on the storm and will continue to receive regular updates as the system heads toward the United States.
Who should pay attention? Anyone living in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, Cuba, and the northern Gulf and Florida coast should keep an eye on the weather forecast for the coming days. The direction and strength of the upper-level steering winds around this system will determine where it will move and how fast.
As of Sunday afternoon, a Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the Yucatan Peninsula from Tulum to Rio Lagartos and Pinar del Rio in Cuba; A storm watch is in effect for Chokoloskee to Indian Pass, Florida; A hurricane watch is in effect for Englewood to Indian Pass, Florida; A tropical storm watch is in effect for Isle of Youth in Cuba, south of Englewood to Chokoloskee, Florida, and Dry Tortugas, Florida.
Disantis issued an executive order A state of emergency was declared Saturday in 33 provinces in anticipation of possible inclement weather. “The Governor and Florida Department of Emergency Management are taking precautions in a timely manner to ensure that communities, infrastructure and resources in Florida are prepared, including those still recovering in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian,” read a press release announcing the executive order.
How long can it affect the United States? By Monday, the system is likely to enter the Gulf of Mexico and move toward Florida. It could become a hurricane by Tuesday afternoon and hit the west coast of the Florida peninsula by Wednesday.
How strong can you get? It is still too early to tell how powerful this system can become or how quickly it can consolidate. But it will travel through the warmer waters of the entire Atlantic basin, which is a massive source of energy for the developing storm. Exceptionally warm waters can fuel storms to strengthen and sometimes succumb Rapid intensification.
sea surface temperatures are warm log in the Gulf of Mexico and very high across the northwest Caribbean Sea. Water temperatures must be around 80 degrees Fahrenheit to sustain tropical development, and parts of the Caribbean and Gulf are well above this threshold.
hindrance to development: Warm water isn’t the only factor at play. The tropical system will also need upper level winds to cooperate. Gale shear — the change in wind direction or speed with height — can tear a developing storm apart.
The amount of wind shear that this potential system experiences is a critical factor in its formation and ultimate strength. One forecast model shows more wind shear, which limits its development. Another shows less wind shear, allowing the system to evolve.
Either way, wind shear may decrease for some time early next week across the far northern Caribbean Sea and eastern Gulf of Mexico, allowing any system that is forming to consolidate.
Franklin strengthens into a hurricane as he heads towards Bermuda
Meanwhile, in the mid-Atlantic, Tropical Storm Franklin has strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane with sustained winds nearing 90 mph, according to an update Sunday from the National Hurricane Center. This has been confirmed by NOAA reconnaissance aircraft and Air Force hurricane hunters.
Hurricane Franklin is currently located 575 miles south of Bermuda and moving relatively slowly at a speed of 8 mph in a north-northwest direction.
The center said in its update: “The strength of the hurricane is expected to increase steadily, and Hurricane Franklin may turn into a major hurricane early next week.” A major hurricane is defined as a category 3 or higher with winds of more than 111 mph.
“The swells generated by Franklin are expected to begin affecting Bermuda by Sunday night,” the hurricane center said, noting that “these swells are also likely to cause life-threatening waves and rip current conditions late this weekend into early next week along parts of the coast. East Coast of the United States.”
Small differences in Franklin’s track over the weekend will determine how close he will be to Bermuda when he makes his closest pass on Monday and Monday nights.
Franklin winds and rain will extend far beyond its center. Tropical storm-force winds are possible across Bermuda early next week as Franklin approaches its closest point. Some rain and thunderstorms are also possible across Bermuda as Franklin passes.
CNN’s Zoe Sutil contributed to this report.
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