UPDATE: Tropical Storm Andrea Expected To Drench Fla. Gulf Coast, Tallahassee
Update: 9:30 p.m. Wednesday:
The first named storm of Atlantic season, Andrea, has formed over the Gulf of Mexico and is likely to bring wet weather to parts of Florida's west coast by the end of the week.
Forecasters issued a tropical storm warning for the west coast of Florida from Boca Grande to an area along the coast south of Tallahassee.
Andrea had maximum sustained winds near 40 miles per hour, as of Wednesday evening. It was moving north, and forecasters expected the storm to move northeastward on Thursday.
The center of Andrea is expected to reach the coast of the Florida Big Bend on Thursday afternoon or evening and move over southeastern Georgia and eastern South Carolina Thursday night and Friday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. It's an update to the post below:
Starting on Wednesday, a storm system in the Gulf of Mexico is expected to bring torrential rain, flooding and possible tornados to Florida’s West Coast. Meteorologists expect the storm to be over the Big Bend area by Friday.
There’s a 50 percent chance the system could develop into a tropical cyclone. Some areas of the Gulf Coast should be bracing for three-to-five inches of rain before Friday.
National Weather Service meteorologists say, they can’t pinpoint which counties will have it the worst, but flood watches are in effect from Southwest Florida’s Lee county up to Levy County, and in the cities of Tallahassee and Melbourne.
Officials are warning, Tampa’s Thursday morning commute could be quite messy, with high winds and heavy rain expected there.