Potential for Dangerous Rip Currents & Increased Rain Coverage from Invest 96L Along the Gulf Coast

A surface trough of low pressure located over the northwestern Bahamas is producing a large area of disorganized showers and thunderstorms that extend from the northwestern and central Bahamas eastward a few hundred miles over the western Atlantic. This system is forecast to move westward at about 10 mph, crossing The Bahamas and Florida today and tonight and moving into the eastern Gulf of Mexico on Saturday. Upper-level winds are expected to become conducive for development, and a tropical depression could form while this system moves slowly west-northwestward over the eastern Gulf of Mexico this weekend and early next week. Regardless of development, this system is expected to produce locally heavy rainfall over portions of the Bahamas, South Florida, and the Florida Keys during the next couple of days.

A few members of the ATCF model run from earlier this morning have the center of this system potentially moving into portions of Central Alabama in as early as Wednesday morning or as late as Friday morning. Other members are spread out along the Gulf Coast.

Intensity Guidance is early, so there are only a few members showing up at this time. The majority of these members have the system potentially becoming a weak category 1 hurricane within the next 60 to 96 hours while one member decides to keep it as a weak depression or less.

While it is still too early to know for sure what exactly we will be dealing with once it emerges over the Gulf of Mexico, we know at this point that there will be the increased risk of rip currents and rough surf along the Gulf Coast, along with an increase in rain coverage over the Gulf Coast and several miles inland over the deep south. Once this system gets better organized, we will be able to get a much clearer picture of what to expect and where it will go. Stay tuned for updates.

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