The National Hurricane Center has issued a Hurricane Watch for the Florida Gulf coast from the Anclote River to Indian Pass. A Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for the Florida Gulf coast west of Indian Pass to the Walton/Bay County line.
At 5:00 AM EDT the center of Tropical Depression Nine was located about 375 miles southwest of Tampa. The depression is moving north at 2 mph. A north-northeastward motion at a faster forward speed is expected to begin later today, and a turn toward the northeast is forecast tonight. On the forecast track, the center of the tropical cyclone will approach the northwest Florida coast in the warning area on Thursday afternoon.
Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and the depression is expected to become a tropical storm later today, and could be near hurricane strength by the time landfall occurs.
The National Hurricane Center issue the next complete update at 11:00 AM EDT.
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