Will Alberto impact our weather next week?

I received a few questions regarding subtropical storm Alberto this (Saturday) morning. I thought I would just write down some thoughts on the system and what, if any, impacts the storm may have on our area next week.

The first question was in relation to the term subtropical and what that means.

A subtropical storm differs from a tropical system in its physical properties. Subtropical systems have a cold core in their upper levels. A tropical system has a warm core. Subtropical systems also tend to be more disorganized, rather ragged and spread out. The radius of max winds and precipitation is also removed from the center of the storm.

The impacts of subtropical systems are generally the same. Subtropical systems can still generate strong wind and heavy precipitation. Flooding is the major concern with subtropical systems.

Subtropical storm Alberto on the morning of May 26. Subtropical systems are more disorganized due to wind shear and cold core processes.

The second question is will Alberto have any impacts on our area.

Right now it’s a little too soon yet to answer that question with any confidence. The Saturday morning National Hurricane Center official track does forecast the system northward and into the Ohio Valley by mid-week next week.

Note that the forecast track of the system is very broad as you go out in time due to the variance in computer modelling as time progresses.

Alberto is forecast to lose its subtropical characteristics and mature to a tropical system on Sunday. It will become better organized when this occurs. It is likely that it will not strengthen into a hurricane before landfall.

Right now it’s just way too soon to make any definite forecasts. If, and it’s a big IF, the system were to move into east-central Ohio next week, the main impact would be heavy rainfall and flood concerns.

We will continue to watch as Alberto and his track unfolds over the coming week. Just keep in mind that no one knows exactly where the system is headed after it makes landfall Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.

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