FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — The first tropical disturbance of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season moved through the Gulf of Mexico and inland over the Florida Panhandle early Monday.
The Miami-based National Hurricane Center said in a forecast outlook that no tropical development was expected from the the blob of disorganized thunderstorms, but it could bring gusty winds and the potential for some flooding to the Florida Panhandle, Alabama and the Southeastern U.S.
As of 2 a.m. Monday, the disturbance was 15 miles west-northwest of Pensacola and was moving northeast.
The disturbance represents the first system the hurricane center is monitoring this year, in what is expected to be a busy season.
The Atlantic hurricane season officially starts June 1 and runs through Nov. 30.
The Gulf Coast has been hit hard by hurricanes in recent years, but thankfully, this disturbance is not expected to escalate to tropical storm or hurricane status, forecasters said.
Still, the system could dump heavy rain and bring powerful wind gusts to the Gulf Coast between southeastern Louisiana and the western Florida Panhandle.
“The showers and storms have moved into the northern Gulf and you’ll see heavy rainfall and flooding,” said Larry Kelley, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Miami.
As of 2 a.m. ET Monday, the disturbance has 0% chance of becoming a tropical system — either a depression, tropical storm or hurricane — through five days.
The first tropical wave — a weather pattern that can possibly intensify into a hurricane — emerged off the coast of Africa on May 8.
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