Alberto stronger on move toward US Gulf Coast

Storm clouds over a lifeguard station on Miami Beach in Florida. File

Subtropical Storm Alberto moved to within 50 miles of the Florida panhandle Monday, the National Hurricane Center said.

Rain from Subtropical Storm Alberto will slack off some for Memorial Day but meteorologists still forecast scattered showers in Northeast Florida and Southeast Georgia for the holiday Monday.

Forecasters said Alberto could bring life-threatening high water to southern coastal states when it slams an area from MS to western Georgia with up to 12 inches (30 cm) of rain and possible tornadoes. The storm will weaken as it moves north through Tennessee and Kentucky into the Ohio Valley but will continue to produce large amounts of rain.

Rick Scott (R) also declared a state of emergency in all of the state's 67 counties on Saturday. The tropical system became a subtropical storm Friday, the hurricane center said.

The three southern states are preparing for the worst, as Alberto is expected to make landfall in Florida on Monday morning.

The National Hurricane Center has also warned of the possibility of tornadoes "from northern Florida into central and southern Georgia, southern SC, and southeastern Alabama".

Forecasters say 2 inches (5 centimeters) of rain is expected on saturated ground with isolated areas getting up to 4 inches (10 centimeters) of rain. Just because it's sunny after the storm passes, Medlin said, there's still a risk for swimmers.

Storm Alberto lashed the western Cuban region of Artemisa on Sunday (May 27), swelling a nearby river and dumping up to 12 cm of rain in less than eight hours.

But most other energy companies are leaving offshore crews in place while they watch 2018's first Atlantic storm.

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Tropical Storm warnings have has been posted for parts of the northern Gulf Coast and some coastal waters along the western side of FL.

Governors in Alabama and MS also declared states of emergency on Saturday.

After making landfall near the Florida panhandle, the storm was expected to continue northwest, slowing down Monday, according to weather.com.

Waters off the eastern and northern Gulf Coast are expected to be rough through Tuesday.

Maximum sustained winds are near 65 miles per hour (100 km/h) with higher gusts.

Flash flooding is the number one storm-related killer in the United States.

It will bring heavy rain and winds of 100kmh (65mph) across southern states, the US National Hurricane Center said.

In its 7 a.m. advisory the National Hurricane Center said Alberto was at latitude 29.0 north, longitude 86.0 west, or south of the Panama City Beach area.