Published: Mon, May 28, 2018
Sci-tech | By Lila Blake

US States Declare Emergency Ahead of Subtropical Storm

US States Declare Emergency Ahead of Subtropical Storm

Mandatory evacuations were ordered for small barrier islands in one northern Florida county, and voluntary evacuations were issued for another.

Florida Governor Rick Scott, who issued a state of emergency on Saturday in all of the state's 67 counties, said on Sunday that the Florida National Guard has 5,500 guard members ready to be deployed if needed.

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.

Even though South Florida is not in the projected path of Alberto, the region is on the east side - the wettest side - of the storm. Little if any strengthening is expected before Alberto reaches the northern Gulf Coast.

Gusty showers began lashing parts of Florida on Sunday, and authorities were warning of the possibility of flash flooding.

Locally, the highest winds were reported at New Smyrna Beach Municipal Airport, with 35 mph wind gusts for several hours and sustained winds of 20-21 mph.

A tropical storm warning remained in effect for Cuba's western Pinar del Rio province, where heavy rains could trigger flash floods and mudslides, the NHC said. These will be influenced by the remnants of what is now Subtropical Storm Alberto, our first tropical storm of the year. The National Hurricane Center in Miami issued tropical storm warnings for parts of Florida and Alabama, saying tropical storm conditions are possible there by Sunday night.

Bay County emergency management officials held a news briefing Sunday, and said that due to tides and when the storm is expected to hit, any surge isn't a major concern.

The heaviest rain in the Gulf Coast is expected between Sunday and Tuesday and is forecasted to be somewhere between six and 12 inches with a maximum of 15.

"It's maintained its strength and wind speeds overnight, and it looks like it's headed for landfall at Panama City, (Florida)", said David Roth, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland.

In Miami, organizers called off the sea portion of the Miami Beach Air & Sea Show Sunday because of heavy rain and rough waters. And in the Tampa Bay area on the central Gulf Coast, cities offered sandbags for homeowners anxious about floods.

Florida and MS are under states of emergency ahead Subtropical Storm Alberto hitting the Golf Coast. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant authorised the use of the National Guard, his office said in a statement.

Alberto's moisture could push all the way to Canada in coming days, Pydynowski said. "I ask everyone to please make final preparations to your family emergency plan, especially those that live in mobile homes and low-lying areas".

Tommy Whitlock said sandbagging has become a usual event in his life since he lives next to a creek.

Large cloud formations gather behind the downtown Gulfport, Miss., water tower Saturday afternoon, May 26, 2018, as Subtropical Storm Alberto slowly makes its way through the Gulf of Mexico.

We saw a few showers and storms on Saturday and we saw a drier weather day on Sunday.

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