ALBERTO TO MAKE LANDFALL LATER TODAY ALONG NW FLORIDA COAST… Subtropical Storm Alberto is slated to make landfall within the next 12 hours along the northwest Florida coast between Mexico Beach and Navarre. Maximum sustained winds near the center of the storm are around 65 miles per hour early on this Memorial Day Monday. The window for Alberto to become a purely tropical storm/hurricane has basically closed, so landfall will almost certainly go down as a subtropical storm. That won’t matter much as impacts remain the same: Heavy rain/flash flooding, isolated tornadoes, and gusty winds at the beaches.
SOUTH AL & NW FL UPDATE… For now, scattered showers continue across south Alabama and northwest Florida. As of 7:30AM, light rain showers are happening near Chatom, Millry, Coffeeville, Thomasville, and Citronelle. There also is a heavier shower near Munson, Wing, and Milligan. Breezy conditions are happening near the coast with increased wave action. Impacts, at the moment, across our region remain limited. Good news!
RAGGED SATELLITE APPEARANCE… You can see in the attached water vapor satellite/radar composite shot that Alberto is a very ragged subtropical storm with very little in the way of deep conviction at the moment. The center of Alberto is 55 miles south-southwest of Port Saint Joe, or about 75 miles south of Panama City. Numerous rain bands are bringing very heavy rain to areas near and south of Tyndall Air Force Base, like Mexico Beach, Port St. Joe, and Apalachicola, but this is a very small condensed area that is currently seeing heavy rain. Rain coverage will likely increase if/when more convection fires near the center of Alberto today.
ISOLATED TORNADOES LIKELY… Near and east of the center of Alberto, there will be a risk of isolated tornadoes forming today. Please have multiple ways to get urgent weather warnings over the next 12-15 hours as Alberto tracks northward across our region. There already has been one tornado warning in the last hour for portions of Liberty County just west of Tallahassee. If/when a tornado warning is issued for your area, don’t wait to try to see the tornado, get sheltered IMMEDIATELY. Based on the latest trajectory of Alberto, this puts much of south Alabama and northwest Florida on the “better,” west side of the storm, BUT… Since the center of the storm will be near the eastern side of our region, tornadoes will be possible. This means if you’re in Butler, Covington, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Escambia (AL), or Conecuh counties, the tornado risk is not zero!
WIND GUSTS NEAR COAST… High wind gusts will be possible over the next few hours near coastal areas from Navarre eastward to Sopchoppy south of Tallahassee as Alberto moves onshore. Breezy conditions are expected throughout the day across south Alabama and northwest Florida, but wind impacts will be less for inland areas.
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I’ll have a video update a bit later as the center of Alberto moves onshore onto the Florida Panhandle. Let me know if you have questions.