Alabama, Mississippi activate National Guard ahead of Subtropical Storm Alberto

Muriel Hammond
May 29, 2018

The storm that was expected to make landfall later Monday had maximum sustained winds of 65 miles per hour (100 kph). Through Monday, it is expected to slowly migrate toward land, so the odds of rain with gusty winds will increase by Monday afternoon and evening.

Alberto, the first named tropical storm of the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season - which hasn't even begun yet - made landfall today, bringing heavy rain and strong winds to the northwestern corner of The Sunshine State.

At 10 p.m. Sunday, Alberto was centered about 205 miles west of Tampa and had top sustained winds of 65 mph - up from 50 mph earlier.

Overnight, Subtropical Storm Alberto approaching the Florida panhandle slowed down to half its speed but didn't lose any of its strength, according to the National Hurricane Center. The main threat is from heavy rain that could lead to flooding, the city said, but also high winds and storm surge could cause problems.

Mandatory evacuations were issued for Franklin County's barrier islands and anybody living on the coastline in mobile homes and recreational vehicle parks.

All three counties are in north Florida. The most intense rain and thunderstorm activity with the storm is located directly north of the center.

Panovich said the Charlotte area will be under a medium risk of severe weather with flash flooding being the primary concern this week.

Mark Bowen, the Bay County emergency management director, suggested people stay safe - preferably indoors.

Jeffrey Medlin, meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service's Mobile office, warned that even after the storm passes there will still be swells that could cause unsafe rip currents.

In addition to parts of the southeastern US, the heavy rains and storm conditions could produce "life-threatening flash floods and mudslides" in Cuba, the NHC said.

- Subtropical storm Alberto is bypassing North Carolina entirely, but central and western portions will feel its indirect effects Monday in the form of heavy rains and possible flooding.

Many business owners spent the weekend filling sandbags and preparing for the brunt of the storm.

The 2018 Atlantic hurricane season's first storm, Alberto, is set to make landfall east of Pensacola, Fla., in the early afternoon - just shy of hurricane intensity.

A tropical storm warning is in place for much of the Florida panhandle up to the Alabama border.

Waters off the eastern and northern Gulf Coast are expected to be rough through Tuesday.

Kennon says red flags are flying along the beaches to caution people against going in the water and officials are patrolling to make sure people din't ignore the warnings.

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