Alberto now a depression, but still poses threats to Middle Georgia

Memorial Day weather forecast: Warm, muggy day with an uncertain afternoon

Alberto bringing heavy rain to area this Memorial Day

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

Federal officials with the Gulf Islands National Seashore - a group of barrier islands in the Gulf of Mexico - say that ahead of Alberto's arrival, "All Florida areas remain closed, including Hwy".

Danny Gant, lead meteorologist at the NWS in Morristown said it'll be a busy 8 to 12 hours Tuesday morning when all of East Tennessee is hit with rain from Alberto.

Numerous northern Florida panhandle's beaches were empty of the crowds typical for Memorial Day.

On Friday, Exxon Mobil Corp. pulled non-essential personnel from its Lena oil production platform and Royal Dutch Shell Plc shut in its Ram Powell hub, but most other energy companies are leaving offshore crews in place while they watch 2018's first Atlantic storm.

Mayor Tony Kennon said in a phone interview Monday afternoon that the grim forecast kept Orange Beach from having the record crowds that were anticipated. Showers and a few thunderstorms are likely through Wednesday evening, but the severe weather/low-end tornado risk will have ended by then. Lifeguards posted red flags along the white sands of Pensacola Beach, where swimming and wading were banned and holiday plans were disrupted.

Bringing with it damaging winds, heavy rainfall, flooding, and storm surges, Alberto has already proven to be deadly, with WYFF-TV Anchor Mike McCormick and photojournalist Aaron Smeltzer of Greenville, South Carolina being killed after a tree fell on their SUV.

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Earlier Monday, Alberto rolled up big waves and tides along beaches of the northern Gulf Coast. The storm was expected to make landfall later Monday.

The center of what was once Alberto is moving over northwest Alabama. One to four hurricanes could be "major" with sustained winds of at least 111 miles per hour. And in the Tampa Bay area on the central Gulf Coast, cities offered sandbags for homeowners anxious about floods.

In Panama City, Assistant Fire Chief Gary Swearingen said the rain and wind knocked down trees but did not require any rescues.

And just as Memorial Day marked summer's unofficial start in the U.S., Alberto gave it the unofficial start of what forecasters recently predicted would be an active hurricane season.

Slowly strengthening Subtropical Storm Alberto could cause more than $1 billion in economic losses to the U.S. Gulf Coast as it tracks north, bringing a growing threat of floods, but it's had little impact on offshore energy production.

Some isolated storms in this band still expected to have the potential to become strong/severe with gusty winds of 40-60 miles per hour.

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