|Subtropical Storm Alberto looks like a disorganized|
mess of thunderstorms in the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
Still, it is threatening to cause a lot of flooding
in the southeastern United States in the coming days.
It's disorganized and struggling against strong upper level winds and dry air trying to intrude on the system, but it still poses quite a danger to the eastern Gulf Coast.
Flooding is the main worry from this storm as it nears the Gulf Coast around Alabama or the Florida panhandle around Monday.
Alberto is being called a subtropical storm because it has characteristics of both a tropical storm and a regular old storm system. It looks like Alberto will transition to a fully tropical storm over the next couple of days.
But these semantics don't really matter in terms of the impacts from this storm. The storm's winds will probably increase from the current 40 mph sustained to perhaps near 65 mph as it approaches the coast Monday.
However, the wind isn't the big worry here. As noted, flooding is going to be a big factor. Six to 12 inches of rain, with locally more, will come down with Alberto, making the flooding inevitable.
What makes this worse is that as Alberto approaches and then crosses the coast, it will slow down, and linger for a few days. (A high pressure system that is causing a record heat wave in parts of teh Plains and Midwest is slowing Alberto's forward progress.) That prolongs the rainfall, causing precipitation totals to rise and increase the risk of flooding.
The remnants of Alberto will likely cause local flooding in many areas of the East through next week as it slowly lifts toward the north and east, possibly reaching New England by the end of next week.