Alberto bringing scattered storms and gusty winds to the area

Saturday weather forecast

Subtropical Storm Alberto is expected to hit the panhandle of Florida Monday afternoon while bringing the threat for heavy rain, gusty winds, and risky storm surge for those areas.

The US states of Alabama, Florida and MS have declared an emergency ahead of subtropical storm Alberto expected to make landfall on Monday, authorities said.

Gov. Phil Bryant signed a proclamation Saturday morning declaring a state of emergency ahead of Alberto's landfall. Only.13 inches had fallen at the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport through 5 p.m. Saturday, but almost 6 inches has fallen so far this month, about three times the normal amount.

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About 130 to 250 millimetres of rain are possible along affected areas in eastern Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, western Tennessee and the western Florida Panhandle. The storm has maximum sustained winds of 50 miles per hour and the NHC says it is moving north-northwest at 12 miles per hour. West Palm Beach, which experienced its 15th straight day of rain on Saturday, got 1.14 inches of rain on Friday, breaking the record of 1.08 inches for Friday that was set on May 25, 1972. Alberto is forecasted to make landfall as a strong tropical storm in Alabama or the panhandle late in the day on Monday. Rough conditions were expected to roil the seas off the eastern and northern Gulf Coast region through Tuesday. The possibility of heavy rain, storm surges and flash flooding, however, pose hazards for residents.

The Emerald Coast remains under a storm surge watch and a tropical storm warning.

At about 2 p.m. EDT, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said Alberto was centered about 65 miles north-northwest of Cuba and moving north at 13 mph.

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Last week, another pulse of tropical moisture that didn't rise to the level of a storm soaked the South. There is now only a 30 percent chance of rain Sunday.

Alberto - the first named storm of the 2018 hurricane season - was continued roiling toward parts of coastal Mexico and Cuba with rip currents and risky surf on Saturday. Tropical downpours will move northward into NCFL starting on Sunday.

"On the forecast track, the center of Alberto will move over the northern Gulf of Mexico tonight and cross the northern Gulf Coast in the warning area on Monday", the center said.

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Alberto comes during the Memorial Day weekend, and is expected to affect travel on Monday, when many people will return from their holidays.

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