Emergency declared as Tropical Storm Gordon heads for Gulf Coast

Tropics heating up as peak of hurricane season nears

The Gulf Islands National Seashore closed three of its areas, including State Road 399 on Santa Rosa Island because of standing water and sand covering portions of the road.

Flash flood warnings went into effect over parts of the western Florida panhandle and southern Alabama.

Additional rainfall is possible late in the weekend and early next week in the form of scattered showers and thunderstorms, the statement added.

Santa Rosa County can expect showers and thunderstorms until after midnight.

As of 7 p.m., Lawrence received about 0.76 inches of rain on Wednesday.

Brandon Drake, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Topeka, said theories differ on how the storm will progress.

"Sometimes in years that are supposed to be El Niños or developing El Niños, we see that kind of distribution, but it's not a ideal correlation between the two", he said.

"This storm has every possibility to track further in our direction", Edwards said during a news conference Monday evening. The National Hurricane Center calls the storm "life threatening".

The Escambia County Sheriff's office posted on its Facebook page late Tuesday that deputies responded to a call that a tree had fallen on a mobile home in Pensacola.

Nevertheless, she said she and her husband will remain in their home, which sits on tall pilings, 24 feet above the ground. Others did their familiar pre-storm preparation rituals, including the staff at The Hotel Whiskey in Pass Christian, Mississippi, only about a block away from the Gulf of Mexico.

The 10pm advisory from the National Hurricane Center officially marked the landfall of Tropical Storm Gordon just west of the Alabama / Mississippi State line Tuesday. Still, the Mobile region likely will see flooding in low-lying areas and winds up to 60 miles per hour.

Authorities are also warning residents about the possibilities of tornadoes over MS and western Alabama as powerful winds remain. Red flags flew over Pensacola-area beaches in Florida's Panhandle, where swimming and wading in the Gulf of Mexico was prohibited. She said numerous locals, herself included, were planning to stay through the storm but many visitors who'd come in for the Labor Day weekend were heading out of town.

"We've just about got things cleaned up", Collier told WPMI.

David Vaughan, beach director out of South Walton, said beachgoers are being very cooperative and staying out of the water. From an altitude of 255 miles, cameras outside the space station watched as the storm moved northwest at 15 mph (24 km/h).

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