Tropical Storm Isaac: Saturday Evening Update

By: Stephen Bowers Email
By: Stephen Bowers Email

The current state of Tropical Storm Isaac has changed very little this afternoon. The storm is intact but disorganized.

The storm is hugging Cuba's north shore and will be moving away from the island tonight.

Overnight
If Tropical Storm Isaac can organize quickly, the storm very well could become a hurricane early Sunday morning. The latest forecast is in very good agreement with the track of the storm overnight with previous forecasts and the latest run of computer models. A Hurricane Warning has been issued for the Florida Keys and the southern tip of Florida, meaning hurricane conditions are expected within 36 hours.

Monday Through Wednesday
After tonight and tomorrow, greater differences are noted in the official track from the National Hurricane Center and the computer model guidance. Models have been quite inconsistent for the past few days, and they likely will continue to change. The latest change in the models for this afternoon cluster forecast tracks very close to Mobile Bay Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning. Some models are a little farther west, and others a little farther east. Intensity forecasts have actually backed off a little bit, but the westward trend with the models would take Isaac over the warmest portion of the Gulf of Mexico. That may mean a period of rapid intensification, and if that happens the current forecast of a category two a landfall could be a little low.

The bottom line is this: the entire Gulf Coast from New Orleans to Panama City is fair game for potential landfall. We will continue to monitor the progress of this system for the next few days. While impacts along the coast will be significantly worse, the possibility exists that at least part of our area could experience a period of rough weather due to Isaac from Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday morning. Direct impacts on our area will become more apparent as the track of the center becomes more apparent.

Inland hurricane threats include flooding rainfall, gusty winds up to 60-70 mph, and tornadoes. The areas to the right of the circulation path with respect to its movement are the most favored areas for tornadoes.

We will have more updates as new information is available. Stay with the Newscenter 11 Team on air, online at wtok.com and on Facebook and Twitter for further information.


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