Tropical Depression 9 is 400 miles south of our coast. It will continue to drift to the northwest and then become a minimal tropical storm tonight or tomorrow.
Tropical Storm Watches cover the Florida coast between Panama City and Apalachicola and Hurricane Watches cover the Florida coast from Apalachicola just north of Tampa. These are for potential threats in the next two days.
After the system takes a turn to the northeast by late tomorrow, it will increase forward speed. On the current track, our local concerns would be dangerous surf and rip currents, and coastal erosion from tides that will run 1 to 2 feet above average.
Landfall could be anywhere from central Florida to the Florida Panhandle, sometime between Thursday midday and Thursday night. In the case that the system makes a dramatic shift toward the northwest, the worst case scenario for our area would be a wetter and breezier Panhandle on Thursday and Friday, but still not likely in the path of the worst of the storm.
Most of the week will give us a northeast wind. Rain coverage stays low, with high temperatures rising into the middle 90s. If the system comes closer, the Panhandle would be wetter on Thursday and Friday.
Nights will be calmer with lows in the middle 70s.
By Saturday the tropical issues in the Gulf will be done but the east coast of the US will watch whatever the storm becomes as a potentially larger threat. While we focus on this currently small system, Hawaii is looking at two hurricanes that may give them trouble- Madeline and Lester.