• Threat of heavy rain continues as Alberto weakens to subtropical depression

    By: Kevin Williams , Rusty McCranie , Kelly Healey , George Waldenberger

    Updated:

    Story Highlights

    • Alberto has weakened to a subtropical depression
    • Expect several isolated storms overnight

    ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - 11 p.m.

     

    Alberto weakened to a subtropical depression late Monday, certified meteorologist George Waldenberger said.

     

    Winds weakened to 35 mph, and the storm is expected to weaken further during the next 24 hours, Waldenberger said.

     

    The storm threatens to bring heavy rain to parts of the southeast United States. Central Florida is forecast to experience several isolated storms overnight.

     

    Certified meteorologist Brian Shields will update the storm's track on Channel 9 Eyewitness News, beginning at 5 a.m.

     

    4:45 p.m.

     

    Subtropical Storm Alberto, the first named storm of the 2018 season, has made landfall at Laguna Beach, Florida.

     

    Watch live: Doppler 9HD

     

    The storm has been weakening all day in the Gulf of Mexico, but is still producing winds of about 50 mph, according to the National Weather Service.

     

    The worst of the storm will impact Florida's gulf coast and northern panhandle, although Central Florida is also dealing with the storm. Isolated showers and storms are developing have been developing all afternoon, and will continue to do so, according to Channel 9 certified meteorologist George Waldenberger.

     

     

    Track the storms with Channel 9 meteorologist George Waldenberger on Channel 9 Eyewitness News starting at 4pm.

     

    Download the free WFTV News & Weather apps

     

     

    1:45 p.m.

    Subtropical Storm Alberto is set to make landfall on Florida's panhandle in the coming hours.

     

    As the storm slowly churns in the Gulf of Mexico, it is bringing Memorial Day showers to Central Florida.

     

    Watch live: Doppler 9HD

     

    According to Channel 9 meteorologist George Waldenberger, isolated showers and storms are starting to form. Waldenberger says to expect more rain and storms in the later afternoon and early evening.

     

     

    Meanwhile, Alberto, the first named storm of the 2018 season, is expected to make landfall on Florida's gulf coast Monday in the late afternoon or early evening.

     

    Track the storm with Channel 9 meteorologist George Waldenberger on Channel 9 Eyewitness News starting at 4pm.

     

    Download the free WFTV News & Weather apps

     

    11 a.m.

     

    Subtropical Storm Alberto is getting closer to Florida's gulf coast.

     

    According to Channel 9 meteorologist Rusty McCranie, the storm's winds have slowed to about 60 mph. It is slowly churning toward the Florida panhandle, and is expected to make landfall late Monday afternoon or early evening.

     

     

    Watch live: Doppler 9HD

     

    Track the storm with Channel 9 meteorologist Rusty McCranie on Channel 9 Eyewitness News at noon.

     

    Download the free WFTV News & Weather apps

     

     

    9 a.m.

     

    The center of Subtropical Storm Alberto will likely reach the northern U.S. Gulf Coast Monday afternoon or evening.

     

    Download: Free WFTV  Weather app to track storms

     

    The National Hurricane Center in Miami said in an advisory issued at 8 a.m. EDT that the storm's center was located about 100 miles south-southeast of Destin, Florida, and moving north at 6 mph.

     

    Maximum sustained winds were clocked at 65 mph.

     

    Live: Doppler 9 HD

     

    A tropical storm warning remains in effect for an area stretching from Florida's Suwannee River to the border of Alabama and Mississippi.

     

    A storm surge watch remains in effect for much of northern Florida, from the Suwannee to Navarre in the Panhandle. A storm surge watch means life-threatening inundations are possible from rising water moving inland from the coast. Destin and Panama City Beach are within the watch area.

     

    5 a.m.

     

    Subtropical Storm Alberto has gained an early jump on the 2018 hurricane season, heading toward expected landfall sometime Monday on the northern Gulf Coast.

     

    Torrential rainfall and flooding are no longer in the forecast for Central Florida as Alberto tracks toward Panama City, according to WFTV meteorologist George Waldenberger. 

     

    Watch live: Doppler 9 HD

     

    Though the Atlantic hurricane season doesn't officially start until Friday, Alberto has become the first named storm this year, throwing disarray into long holiday weekend plans along Florida's Gulf Coast.

     

    The National Hurricane Center in Miami said at 5 a.m. EDT Monday that Alberto was maintaining its strength as it approached the Florida panhandle and was centered about 125 miles south of Destin. The storm that was expected to make landfall later Monday had maximum sustained winds of 65 mph.

     

    What is a subtropical storm?

     

    Gov. Rick Scott released a statement asking Panhandle residents to be prepared.

     

     “Updated information from the National Hurricane Center issued tonight suggests that Subtropical Storm Alberto is growing stronger and more dangerous,” Scott said. “Make your final preparations now. If you are ordered to evacuate, do so.”

     

    Watch: 5-Day Forecast

     

    The Hurricane Center said a tropical storm warning is in effect from the Suwannee River in Florida to the Mississippi-Alabama state line. A tropical storm warning was discontinued from Florida's Anclote River to the Suwannee River.

     

    Download the free WFTV  Weather app to track storms in your neighborhood

     

     

    The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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