Alberto - the first named storm of the 2018 hurricane season that officially starts June 1 - is expected to strengthen until it reaches the northern Gulf Coast, likely on Monday night.
At about 2 p.m. EDT, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said Alberto was centered about 65 miles (105 kilometers) north-northwest of Cuba and moving north at 13 mph (20 kph). A storm surge watch is in effect for coastal Citrus and Levy counties.
"Locally heavy rainfall is forecast across western Cuba and over much of Florida and the northern Gulf coast into early next week", senior hurricane specialist Stacy Stewart said in Friday's tropical weather outlook.
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"Combine that with the wind from the storm and I would expect tides to be running about a foot above normal, higher for Hernando County northward", Deskins said.
Because of it's poor organization and some cooler temperatures in the upper levels of the atmosphere, Alberto has been designated a subtropical storm.
Those conditions will be felt along the warning zones on the west coast of Florida as well, according to the National Hurricane Center. The highest rainfall totals will accumulate on the coast with 3 to 5 inches possible.
The New Orleans area should be prepared for heavy rain over the weekend and through the middle of next week as Subtropical Storm Alberto meand...
Some slow intensification is likely over the weekend with winds to 50 miles per hour forecast by later tonight and potentially as high as 60 miles per hour as it nears the coasts of Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana by Monday.
Subtropical Storm Alberto - the first named storm of the 2018 hurricane season - was roiling parts of coastal Mexico and Cuba with rip currents and risky surf on Saturday. There were no immediate reports of emergencies. With a tropical storm, the maximum winds and strongest thunderstorms sit close to the center of the storm.
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant said: "Whether you're a resident of this state or just visiting, you need to stay updated on this evolving tropical system".
"Tomorrow evening we are going to start seeing an increase of cloud cover as Tropical Storm Alberto nears the gulf coast", said National Weather Service meteorologist Holly Allen. Tampa Bay is under a slight risk of severe weather today, a few tornadoes are possible along with tropical downpours.