PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Meteorologist Kristen Kennedy gives an update on the remnants of Fred and current activity out in the Gulf.
Because there is no center of Fred, the system is now referred to as a tropical wave. However, strengthening and reorganization of the system is not out of the question. At worst, a Category 1 hurricane could come from Fred over the next couple days. The more probable scenario, though, is a tropical storm. Landfall will be possible anywhere from southern Mississippi to the Panhandle of Florida. Shifts in the path are still possible as the system tries to redevelop. With the current trends, northwest Florida will likely see more impacts in the way of higher rainfall totals, wind gusts and a tornado threat. The timing of impacts has also changed since Fred is moving slower. Conditions look to deteriorate Monday late morning or early afternoon through Tuesday afternoon.
TIMING: Tropical Storm conditions are expected to start as early as Monday morning. Rain showers, storms and windy conditions will be around throughout the day Monday and into Tuesday.
Poor beach conditions will be expected Sunday through Tuesday as wave heights will be climbing up to a peak around 6-8′ on Monday and leftover swell Tuesday.
Any tropical system moving over land brings the threat for isolated tornadoes, and that should be monitored throughout the day on Monday. A slight risk for severe weather will be likely as the storm moves ashore.
- WIND: Most people will likely see winds of 25-45 mph, with some gusts of 50 mph possible. The coastal locations may see some higher winds up to 55 mph. Stronger gusts could knock down trees or power lines, especially with saturated soils expected due to heavy rainfall. Power outages will be scattered at best and are not expected to be widespread at this point.
- RAINFALL: Rainfall might have the biggest impact with 3-6″ of rain possible with isolated amounts of 6+ possible. This is enough to cause flash flooding due to all the recent rain we’ve had across the Panhandle.
The forecast can still change, but a moderate to strong tropical storm seems likely. The GFS and EURO are in better agreement on the track of the system. The EURO weather model shows a stronger storm with more rain across the area.
The storm overall is not expected to make a major impact and will quickly fall apart after moving ashore. Rain and surf remain the main concern while winds and tornadoes will also be possible but shouldn’t cause major issues.
Make your safety plans and other preparations for (at worst) a Category 1 hurricane. At best, we will see moderate to weak tropical storm. However, it’s best to be prepared for the worst.
This forecast may change, so please check back for more information as it becomes available.