Alberto helping bring potentially flooding rain to the Triangle on Memorial Day

A flood watch is expected for South Florida on Saturday morning as a result of Subtropical Storm Alberto

While the storm has not strengthened into a hurricane, it does threaten residents and vacationers across the US Southeast.

Alberto has 30 miles per hour sustained winds and the center is forecast to track north today and be located just to the west of Huntsville by 1PM. The storm prompted Florida, Alabama and MS to launch emergency preparations over the weekend.

In Panama City, Assistant Fire Chief Gary Swearingen said the rain and wind knocked down trees but did not require any rescues. "Strong squalls off and on" had kept her inside, she said.

Alberto is predicted to move northward at a faster rate after making landfall in the western Florida Panhandle on Monday.

Subtropical Storm Alberto headed toward anticipated landfall sometime Monday on the northern Gulf Coast, where white sandy beaches emptied of their usual Memorial Day crowds.

The emergency declarations free up state resources to respond to the storm if necessary.

The storm prompted Florida, Alabama and MS to launch emergency preparations over the weekend amid expectations Alberto would reach land sometime Monday.

Ivey activated the state's emergency operations centre while the Alabama National Guard activated its high water evacuation teams. The system is forecast to move over the Tennessee Valley on Tuesday and into the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes region on Wednesday and Thursday.

In Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia and Kentucky nearly 30million people are under flash flood watches.




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 Florida Keys and Florida peninsula could receive up to 5 inches of rain in some areas.

US forecasters said rain could still cause unsafe flash floods in the coming days in northern Alabama and large areas of Georgia, Tennessee and the Carolinas.

Alberto was more of a rainstorm than a wind threat, but the National Weather Service said at least one tornado had been confirmed.

Authorities did not immediately attribute any deaths or injuries strictly related to Alberto.

Anyone planning to head out to a parade, memorial service or ceremony in Central New York likely won't have to worry about bringing an umbrella since there's less than a 20 percent chance of showers all morning. The rain could lead to flash floods and mudslides on the island.

"I strongly encourage everyone to be safe and stay informed", Mayor LaToya Cantrell said in a statement.

Hurricane season runs from June 1 until November 1 and peaks from mid-August through late October.

Several states, including Florida, Alabama, and MS went into pre-emptive states of emergency on Sunday, and a Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the northern Gulf Coast from the Suwannee River to the Alabama-Florida border.

The early storm doesn't necessarily mean this year's hurricane season will be as busy as last year's, though.

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