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Tropical Storm Watch in offshore areas; Alberto to churn Gulf, Bay waters

Alberto forecast track (8pm 05/25/2018)
Posted at 6:00 PM, May 25, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-25 14:50:18-04

MIDWAY, Fla. (WTXL) -- The ragged form of Subtropical Storm Alberto was still evident late Friday afternoon, but anticipation for some strengthening over the Memorial Day weekend continues.

The center of the poorly organized system was situated a short distance off the east shore of the Yucatan Peninsula, moving slowly east at 2 mph. 

Advisories and watches related to Alberto include a Tropical Storm Watch for coastal and offshore waters near Franklin County, and then for the coastline from Indian Pass west through the Emerald Coast and beyond.

The Big Bend coast, including Indian Pass east to Horseshoe Beach, is under a Storm Surge Watch. This means water levels may increase two to four feet in response to the onshore winds Alberto is expected to produce, peaking on Sunday.

Fast upper-level winds are causing most of the moisture and cloud development on the eastern side of the circulation, interfering intensification efforts.  Massive amounts of dry air are associated with the upper wind pattern, further stalling its organization.

Despite the forces involved in slowing strengthening processes, Alberto is expected to help produce waves of heavy rain which will likely lash out at the western Florida peninsula, some parts of the Big Bend region, and the Panhandle through Monday evening.

Alberto will also produce steady winds over the Gulf and nearby offshore waters that will roughen the seas levels. The expected southeast wind flow will trigger an increase in coastal water levels, especially at high-tide times.

Rain accumulations around the state line region have not changed drastically from previous expectations.  First Alert Weather expects, on average, two to five inches of rainfall through Tuesday, with some higher totals possible near the coast and west of the Apalachicola River.