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Tropical storm watch issued for Florida Gulf Coast

The National Hurricame Center has missued a tropical storm watch has been issued for Florida’s Gulf coast,

GOES Satellite imagery as of June 2, 2022 at 9:52 p.m. EST/ Source - GOES-East - Sector view: Gulf of Mexico
GOES Satellite imagery as of June 2, 2022 at 9:52 p.m. EST/ Source - GOES-East - Sector view: Gulf of Mexico

The remnants of Hurricane Agatha have reformed over the Gulf of Mexico and will likely strengthen into Tropical Storm Alex, the National Hurricane Center said Thursday.

“A Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for the west coast of the Florida peninsula south of the Middle of Longboat Key and for the east coast of the Florida peninsula south of the Volusia/Brevard County line, including Lake Okeechobee,” the National Hurricane Center said in a 4 p.m. bulletin.

As of the 7:00 p.m. update, the NHC says potential Tropical Cyclone One was located about 80 miles north-northwest of Cozumel, Mexico, and about 500 miles southwest of Fort Myers. It was moving north at 5 mph with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph and higher gusts, reports the Orlando Sentinel.

“A turn toward the northeast is expected on Friday, and a faster motion toward the northeast is expected Friday night and Saturday,” the hurricane center said. “On the forecast track, the system should move across the southeastern Gulf of Mexico through Friday night, and then move across the southern and central portions of the Florida Peninsula on Saturday.”

Tropical Storm Watches are in effect for:

  • West coast of Florida south of the Middle of Longboat Key
  • East coast of Florida south of the Volusia/Brevard County Line
  • Florida Keys including the Dry Tortugas
  • Lake Okeechobee
  • Florida Bay
  • Cuban provinces of Matanzas, Mayabeque, Havana, Artemisa, Pinar del Rio, and the Isle of Youth

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible somewhere within the watch area within 48 hours.

In order to become a named storm, the tropical depression would need to intensify and attain sustained winds of 39 miles per hour. The National Hurricane Center said Thursday that there was a 90% chance of that happening over the next 48 hours.

If that indeed, comes to pass, the remnants of Hurricane Agatha that hit southeastern Mexico on Tuesday, will become Tropical Storm Alex, the first named storm of the Atlantic Hurricane Season.

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