ibusinesslines.com May 23, 2018

Wind, rain buffeting northern Gulf Coast

20 June 2017, 09:33 | Laverne Osborne

The National Hurricane Center says there is a 60 percent chance of tropical development in the circled area within 5 days

The National Hurricane Center says there is a 60 percent chance of tropical development in the circled area within 5 days

A tropical system is gaining strength as moves northwards in the Gulf of Mexico, heading toward the Louisiana Gulf Coast, and forecasters say the disturbance is becoming better organized.

Meanwhile, tropical storm Bret is expected to begin weakening later Tuesday and dissipate on Thursday. The storm is expected to near the Louisiana coast late Wednesday, but conditions could be felt sometime today.

The southern Caribbean islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao are under a tropical storm watch.

Bret is expected to remain at tropical storm strength as it moves between Venezuela and Trinidad & Tobago.

Here are live updates about the storm and what it means for New Orleans and Southeast Louisiana.

Storm surges are expected of 1 to 3 feet above ground level and possible tornadoes from south-central Louisiana to the western Florida Panhandle.

'It will be important to focus not necessarily on the exact track, as strong winds high in the atmosphere will pull shower and thunderstorm activity well away from the low center, ' explained AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

Flood watches have been issued for both Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle.

Despite the center of circulation coming onshore so far west of our area, most of the rain is happening on the east side of the center.

The storm was located about 20 miles (35 kilometers) east-northeast of Venezuela's Isla Margarita late Tuesday morning.

Some slight strengthening is possible before the system reaches the coast.

So far, "Potential Tropical Cyclone Three" has winds of 40 miles per hour, but Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft were unable to find a well-defined center of circulation, which keeps it from being a named storm. Its maximum sustained winds are near 40 miles per hour with weakening expected to begin later in the day.

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