SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) -
Tropical Depression 19 stays nearly the same with the latest 11:00 AM advisory with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph moving and a westward movement at 9 mph .This storm is expected to move into the eastern Gulf of Mexico later this evening and will strengthen into Tropical Storm Sally. It could possibly reach hurricane strength early next week as it moves across the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, and there is an increasing risk of life-threatening storm surge and dangerous hurricane-force winds from southeastern Louisiana to the Alabama coast. Residents in these areas should closely monitor the progress of this system and updates to the forecast, as Storm Surge and Hurricane watches will likely be issued later today. A Tropical Storm Watch is in place for Suncoast Gulf waters where tropical storm force winds are possible later today.
Parts of the Suncoast are under a Marginal Risk (1/5) for isolated strong to severe storms today. We can expect squalls to move across the Suncoast through Sunday bringing heavy tropical downpours and gusty winds up to 35-40 mph.
We will be on the right quadrant of the storm, so we can expect a good deal of showers and thunderstorms through Sunday. Rainfall totals look range anywhere from 2-4 inch range with some areas getting some 6 inches of rainfall. The possibility of isolated tornadoes can’t be ruled out this afternoon and through Sunday.
A Flood Watch remains in effect through Sunday evening for the entire Suncoast region.