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Hanna Headed for Texas; Gonzalo Approaches Caribbean

Tropical Storm Hanna — the earliest recorded “H” storm — developed late Thursday evening in the western Gulf of Mexico. Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect ahead of Hanna’s expected arrival on the Texas Gulf coast Saturday. Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Gonzalo continues to churn westward toward the Windward Islands and the eastern Caribbean with little change in its strength.

As of mid-morning Friday, The National Hurricane Center says Hanna’s landfall is most likely on Saturday not far from Corpus Christi, Texas. Forecasters say 4 to 8 inches of rain, with localized amounts up to 12 inches, may cause life-threatening flash floods in parts of South Texas this weekend. High surf conditions and rip currents were expected along the Texas Gulf coast from the storm.

Tropical Storm Gonzalo was located some 500 miles east of the Windward Islands early Friday morning. Hurricane Watches were posted for Barbados, St. Vincent, and the Grenadines since there is still a chance Gonzalo will achieve hurricane intensity before reaching those islands. Even if Gonzalo does not become a hurricane, tropical storm conditions are still likely Saturday over the southern Windward Islands, the National Hurricane Center said.

Another strong tropical wave is moving off the African coast. Many reliable computer models project this wave to develop into the next named storm some time later next week as it moves westward through the open tropical Atlantic Ocean.

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