Tropical Storm Ida Blog: Afternoon Update - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Tropical Storm Ida Blog: Afternoon Update

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HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Tropical Storm Warnings continue along the Northern Gulf coast as Ida maintains Tropical Storm criteria.

Category: Tropical Storm
Maximum Winds: 70mph
Minimum Pressure: 991mb
Movement: North 18mph

Ida's center of rotation is nearly 60 miles southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River and 165 miles south southwest of Pensacola, Florida.  Latest satellite loop shows a smaller area of high cloud tops, but Tropical Storm force winds extended 200 miles from the center. 

Colder sea surface temperatures along the immediate coastline and the influence of land friction will begin to decrease the storm's intensity.  Expect tropical storm force winds along the coast from Gulfport, Mississippi, and eastward into Fort Walton Beach, Florida.  Both Hattiesburg and Laurel should only experience 20-30mph winds later tonight as Ida progresses Northward.

The location of the storm has drifted farther west than anticipated, but Ida's center of rotation should pass over Mobile, Alabama.  Movement is forecast to become more eastward in the next 12 hours.

The storm will cross over the AL/FL coastline late tonight.
Ida will continue to diminish in strength. By landfall Alabama/Florida should mainly expect extratropical conditions. Beachfronts could see Tropical Storm force winds of 55+mph.
The best chance of rain will be tonight for the Pine Belt, but we will continue to be on the "drier" side of the system.

Once making landfall late tonight, Ida's remnants is expected to quickly move eastward through Alabama and Georgia.  Expect conditions to slowly clear on Tuesday as dry conditions build into the Pine Belt on Wednesday.

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