Tropical Disturbance Expected to Make Landfall in Florida’s Panhandle One Year After Hurricane Michael
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2019 AS OF 08:00 AM EST
A tropical disturbance is currently developing in the central Gulf of Mexico. The disturbance is expected to strengthen significantly over the next 24 hours as convection increases and a well-defined center begins to form. It is forecast to develop into Tropical Storm Nestor later in the day on Friday. This storm will continue to move in a northeast direction towards the Gulf Coast, and move slowly over the southeast states this weekend. Guidance shows the storm making landfall over Florida’s Gulf Coast, potentially impacting the Panhandle just 1 year after Hurricane Michael devastated the area. The disturbance currently has wind speeds of 40 miles per hour, and could potentially bring strong winds, heavy rains, and tropical storm conditions to the Florida coast as early as Saturday.
As the disturbance strengthens to a Tropical Storm, it is expected to bring as much as 5 feet of storm surge to the Gulf Coast of Florida. Individuals living near the water between Indian Pass and Clearwater, Florida should remain alert, monitor local weather stations, and follow the advice of local officials. The storm could potentially bring isolated flooding to parts of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina as it moves across the mainland towards the Atlantic Ocean. Residents of these states are likely to experience thunderstorm conditions over the weekend.
Weather Channel Guidance for the Gulf Coast: Source
A disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico is expected to become better organized later today and will bring rain, wind and storm surge flooding to parts of the Gulf Coast, Southeast into this weekend: https://t.co/M2F3FN6K5Q pic.twitter.com/ieZEMnYsUR
— The Weather Channel (@weatherchannel) October 18, 2019
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) encourages individuals to prepare before the storm. Individuals should be prepared and not scared by planning in advance for extreme weather conditions. The Hagerty Blog Team will continue providing information and updates.
FEMA Guidance on Building Emergency Kit: Source
Florida Division of Emergency Management Guidance for the Gulf Coast: Source
A system in the Gulf of Mexico will bring heavy rains and strong winds to portions of gulf coast this weekend. Be prepared by keeping a stocked disaster kit, having a plan in place and staying up to date on the latest storm information. Learn more – https://t.co/MHylpT3joq pic.twitter.com/Hg0ZtGXMaD
— FL Division of Emergency Management (@FLSERT) October 18, 2019
Here’s the breakdown of public advisories from NOAA’s NHC in decreasing order of severity:
TROPICAL STORM WARNING:
- Mississippi/Alabama border to Yankeetown Florida
- Grand Isle Louisiana to the Mouth of the Pearl River
STORM SURGE WARNING:
- Indian Pass Florida to Clearwater Beach Florida
- Remember, Ready.gov provides information on how to prepare for a storm and how to keep you and your family safe
- Understanding the meaning of hurricane maps – a NY Times Opinion Piece: Those Hurricane Maps Don’t Mean What You Think They Mean
Keep track of Hagerty’s coverage here: