Heads up: Gulf Coast faces a new tropical weather threat

Katie Ramirez
October 7, 2018

Once it makes the transition in a tropical depression, or even a tropical storm, it will move north into the Gulf of Mexico. If this does become a named storm, it will be Tropical Storm Michael.

At 8 p.m. Friday, forecasters said the system was producing rainy weather from Central America across the western Caribbean to Hispaniola.

The system has a 30 percent - or low - chance of tropical formation in the next 48 hours, but the odds increase to 60 percent - or medium - in the next five days.

A tropical depression could form by late this weekend or early next week as it drifts slowly northwestward.

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According to Weather Underground's Cat 6 blog, a similar system became Tropical Depression 16 at this time a year ago and would later become Hurricane Nate, which made landfall in Louisiana as a Category 1 storm on October 7.

The area will bring moisture, and subsequently, rain into Central Florida, regardless of whether it becomes a storm.

The Cayman Islands National Weather Service advised that small craft should exercise caution, as seas will be moderate to rough with waves reaching up to 6 feet. A strike along the Gulf Coast could come as early as Tuesday night, but Wednesday is more likely, said Jeff Masters, co-founder of Weather Underground.

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