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Tropical weather likely this week

BY BRUCE BRANUM                                                                 

The Greenville Standard


Tropical Storm Gordon which crossed the Florida peninsula on Monday will track northwest and make landfall along the north central Gulf Coast Tuesday night.

Gordon is now forecast to be a minimal hurricane at landfall. A hurricane warning is in effect for coastal Mobile and Baldwin counties and the adjacent coastal waters.

Tropical storm warnings are in effect for coastal northwest Florida and inland Mobile/Baldwin, and portions of inland southeast Mississippi.

Flash flooding; storm surge, dangerous surf, tornadoes, and strong winds are potential impacts.

Conditions will begin to deteriorate along coastal areas by as early as midday Tuesday with conditions deteriorating inland Tuesday afternoon into Tuesday night.

The probability of tropical storm force winds will continue to increase through Wednesday morning. The chances of experiencing tropical storm force winds: coastal Alabama and inland southeast Mississippi are 7-8 in 10; in northwest Florida, the threat is 2-6 in 10 (which may be highest closer to Alabama/Florida line); for inland, southwest Alabama, they face a 2-7 in 10 with a sharp gradient that increases closer to Mississippi.

South central Alabama face a 1-2 in 10 chance of tropical storm winds. Chance of hurricane force winds have increased slightly.

There is now a 1-2 in 10 chance of hurricane force winds along coastal Alabama and southeast Mississippi.

With Gordon forecast to be a small, Category 1 hurricane, the hurricane force winds will only impact a very limited area right around the center and primarily along the immediate coast.

The earliest reasonable time of arrival of tropical storm force winds along the coast will be midday Tuesday. However, the most likely time of arrival for those winds will be Tuesday afternoon along the coast and Tuesday evening further inland.

The greatest rain totals are likely from Pensacola westward with widespread 2-5 inches expected from Escambia, Fla. west into inland southeast Mississippi. Localized totals of 6-10 inches are possible.

Butler County could expect to receive up to 1-inch of rain. The threat for tornadoes in our area is marginal.

Butler County Emergency Management Agency Director Kris Ware advises Butler County citizens that the ground is already saturated and falling trees are a possibility.

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