Ian Focused on Florida, Concerns of Rough Surf Along Gulf Coast
As promised we are monitoring Tropical Storm Ian which is currently in the Caribbean Sea and tracking towards the Cayman Islands and Western Cuba for arrival on Monday into Tuesday.
Forecaster Update Notes at 11:30 am:
The weather briefing has an updated graphic from the National Weather Service for the probable path of Ian. Also, I’ve included the most likely arrival of Tropical-Storm force winds.
It is predicted that Ian will gain strength and become a major hurricane.
Ian has had a westward shift which now places the system into the eastern Gulf of Mexico by Tuesday or early Wednesday. Currently, the forecasting track is towards the Florida Panhandle or Florida Peninsula.
As always, I like to stress that this information can change. For the long-range predictions, there is still a fair amount of uncertainty.
As Ian moves closer to the United States, it is predicted that it could become or close to a category 3 Hurricane. In addition, Ian circulation is projected to grow as well in the Gulf of Mexico.
According to The Weather Channel, “lower wind shear and an ample supply of warm, deep water in the Caribbean Sea are factors expected to contribute to Ian's rapid strengthening ahead.” Also, Ian could get a “boost from the Loop Current, a northward current of warm water from the western Caribbean Sea into the southern Gulf of Mexico long known to be a fuel source for intense Gulf hurricanes.”
What about the Gulf Coast?
James Spann, ABC 33/40, and Townsquare Media Tuscaloosa Chief Meteorologist said that “the main impact will be near and east of the center of the hurricane. On the current NHC track, much of the Florida Panhandle and Alabama will remain on the drier west side of the system with an offshore flow. Some wind and rain impact is possible for southeast Alabama.” In addition, that rough surf and a high rip current danger are likely all along the Gulf Coast as Ian approaches.”