Category 2 hurricane expected to hit the northeastern Gulf Coast

(IMG: WPMI){ }Category 2 hurricane expected to hit the northeastern Gulf Coast

Tropical Storm Michael continues to gain strength and the storm is predicted to mature into a hurricane on Monday as Michael moves toward the Gulf Coast. The latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center (NHC) has Michael making landfall as category two storm on Wednesday afternoon.

The newest forecast models continue to focus on the Florida Panhandle as a landing spot on Wednesday. The 10 pm update from the NHC keeps both Mobile and Baldwin County out of the cone of uncertainty. Does that mean we lower our guard? No, because tropical cyclones can change their mind and alter their course in a moment's notice. However, it appears as if the local impacts will be limited to wind-driven showers on Tuesday and Wednesday in addition to dangerous surf and high rip current risk conditions. The impacts will be far more intense east of the Pensacola area.

The NOAA Hurricane Hunters are in flight toward the system.