Alberto brings scattered rain, storms to the region

Flash flooding and even tornadoes are possible due to the storms hitting Florida from Alberto

Flash flooding and even tornadoes are possible due to the storms hitting Florida from Alberto

The center of the storm was located about 135 miles southwest of Tampa, Fla., and 140 miles south of Apalachicola, as of the National Hurricane Center's 11 a.m. EDT update.

Subtropical Storm Alberto weakened slightly as it neared Florida's Panhandle, where it should come ashore Monday to spread heavy rains across the southern USA, potentially causing more than $1 billion in economic losses.

The hurricane center said a tropical storm warning was in effect from the Suwannee River in Florida to the Alabama-Florida state line.

Flooding was possible in Florida's Miami-Dade and Monroe counties after weeks of rain, with tornadoes possible Saturday and Sunday and rip currents expected on both coasts, forecasters said.

Breaking landfall today the storm has been seen rushing over the southeast of the U.S., whipping strong winds across the coast.

"The main concern from Alberto is flooding; not so much along the immediate coast, but inland, from the heavy rains that are coming on top of over a week of rain across the southeast", said Chuck Watson, a disaster modeler at Enki Research in Savannah, Georgia.

Alberto drove northward through the area with the classic tropical storm pinwheel rotation that frequently produced sideways rainfall late Tuesday afternoon.

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Subtropical depression Alberto continues to spin across central Alabama and is drifting north northwest with time.

"I don't know if it is weather-related or not, but we did get some pretty strong winds come through and then the call of the tower came in", Mayor Richard Herston said. Isolated areas could see as much as 38 centimetres.

After Alberto reached 3.25 days as a named storm, Colorado State University meteorologist Philip Klotzbach said that it is "the longest-lived Atlantic named storm forming in May since Alice in 1953".

Flash flood watches have already been issued for most counties around the Charlotte region, including for Avery, Burke, Cabarrus, Caldwell, Catawba, Chester (SC), Chesterfield (SC), Cleveland, Gaston, Iredell, Lancaster, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly, Union, and York (SC) counties through tomorrow morning.

Subtropical Storm Alberto is expected to remain well west of North Carolina, but the storm is helping to steer heavy rain to the Triangle on Memorial Day.

"If you are planning to travel on Monday (Memorial Day) the combination of severe weather and heavy traffic conditions could prove hazardous". Forecasters predicted it would move into Alabama after that. "The rain that's widespread over us now is going to shift north of us, so we'll be left with just scattered thunderstorms".

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