Alabama, Mississippi activate National Guard ahead of Subtropical Storm Alberto

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The storm was moving north/northwest at 12 miles per hour.

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 Storm Surge Watch is in effect for entire the west coast.

A flash flood watch has be issued for this period as pockets of heavy rain could lead to localized flooding.

The new forecast track centers landfall in the Florida panhandle. Risky surf and rip current conditions were also likely to occur.

"We've got now, at double red flags", Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford said at a news conference Sunday.

Alberto got an early jump on the 2018 hurricane season, which doesn't officially start until June 1. "Hazardous storm surge is possible along portions of the central and eastern Gulf Coast beginning Sunday".

Alberto had picked up strength as it headed north through the Gulf of Mexico, bringing with it the warning of life-threatening inundation, said the Miami-based hurricane centre.

Subtropical Storm Alberto heads to the US Gulf
Alberto Nearing Hurricane Strength

The heaviest rain will fall along the Gulf Coast where more than a half a foot of rain could accumulate. "Do not think that only areas in the cone will be impacted - everyone in our state must be prepared". Parts of Louisiana and Florida could get 5 inches or more.

Normally packed with vacationers over the Memorial Day weekend, beaches along the eastern U.S. Gulf Coast were largely empty Sunday as a slowly intensifying storm carrying brisk winds and heavy rain approached. There is now only a 30 percent chance of rain Sunday. "Steady weakening is forecast after landfall, and Alberto will likely become a subtropical depression tonight or early Tuesday and degenerate into a remnant low by Tuesday afternoon".

Isolated tornadoes were possible across the region on Sunday and Monday.

Franklin County, in the Florida Panhandle, has issued a mandatory evacuation for its barrier islands in the Gulf of Mexico affecting some 4,200 housing units, while Taylor County, to the east, has a voluntary evacuation order in place for its coastal areas.

The current projected path shows it will make landfall near Pensacola around 1 p.m. Monday as a subtropical storm, with winds of 65 miles per hour.

Tropical Storm Alberto will continue to influence the Suncoast weather for a couple of more days even though it is now moving farther and farther away from us.

A tropical storm warning expired for Cuba's western Pinar del Rio province, where heavy rains could trigger flash floods and mudslides, the National Hurricane Center said.

Alberto's landfall on Memorial Day also complicates matters as Dothan is a city that holiday travelers pass through as they go home from beach vacations.

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