6/18/17 Tropical Update

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG)- Good Sunday evening, I hope all the dads out there had a wonderful Father's Day. The weather certainly cooperated with plenty of sunshine today with scattered showers in the inland areas as the sea breeze pushed inland. The forecast for the first half of the upcoming week is a bit of a tricky one as it is all dependent on the tropics.

We are still eyeing an area of low pressure near the Bay of Honduras that the National Hurricane Center, or NHC, is saying has a 90% chance of development within the next few days as it enters the southern Gulf of Mexico. After it enters the southern Gulf, models are not in agreement on where the system will go. As of Sunday night, it looks like there are two scenarios for us here in Northwest FL.

Scenario one is the wetter scenario where the center of low pressure moves due north, inching closer to the central Gulf Coast. This would bring a plethora of tropical moisture into the panhandle, with 3-6 in of rainfall possible around the area.

Scenario two has the center of low pressure moving northwest towards southern Texas. If this were to occur, the tropical moisture would be displaced well to the west of us and therefore not having a huge impact on our forecast. For right now it is just a waiting game.

As far as intensity and local impacts are concerned, right now the overall consensus is this will not be a strong system if it develops into something tropical. The NHC is not anticipating strong intensification as the intensity forecast models do not have this system becoming any stronger than a tropical storm. With that being said, storm surge and winds will most likely not be a huge impact for us if it ends up moving towards the central Gulf Coast. The heavy rain fall, and localized flooding possibility, would be the primary impact.

We are also watching Potential Tropical Depression #2. This is a tropical wave about 800 miles East Southeast of the Winward Islands as of 8pm Sunday evening. The NHC is classifying this as a potential tropical depression because it almost meets all of the qualifications to be classified as a tropical depression, but falls just short of meeting all of them. With that being said, they expect it to become the next actual depression as early as tonight, and eventually a tropical storm early next week as it travels towards the central Caribbean Sea.

We will keep you updated with the latest information on the tropics on News Channel 7 and here at WJHG.com.

Have a wonderful week and stay dry!