Gordon becomes latest tropical storm moving toward New Orleans

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The tropical wave over South Florida was upgraded to tropical-storm status by the National Hurricane Center Monday morning. The storm is forecast to pass over the Florida Keys on Monday, emerge over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by Monday evening and reach the central Gulf Coast by late Tuesday. The center issued storm surge warnings from Shell Beach, La.to the MS border with Alabama.

In its 5 a.m. advisory, the hurricane center said the potential tropical cyclone was producing maximum sustained winds of 30 miles per hour with higher gusts and moving north-northwest at 16 miles per hour.

For storm information specific to your area, including possible inland watches and warnings, please monitor products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office.

Louisiana, including Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas.

"Any time you get a tropical cyclone in the Gulf production region there could be some disruption, " said Steve Silver, a senior meteorologist at Radiant Solutions in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

Florence was moving toward the west-northwest near 16mph and maximum sustained winds of 50mph with higher gusts late on Sunday evening. No tropical watches or warnings have been issued for the Suncoast.

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Our greatest threat from this system comes in the form of heavy rain causing ponding on roads.

Further updates on the track and strength of this potential tropical system will be coming over the next few days. Red flags flew over Pensacola-area beaches in Florida's Panhandle, where swimming and wading in the Gulf of Mexico was prohibited.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 45 miles.

Rip current risks are in place along Florida's south east coast, north east coast and along the shore between Tallahassee and Pensacola.

Gordon is expected to continue on its current track or maybe a little more northwestward while continuing to strengthen, possibly near hurricane strength as it makes landfall.

Gordon was generating winds of 80 km/h on Monday as it steamed west-northwest at 27 km/h, the National Hurricane Centre said. There are NO watches or warnings for Northwest Florida.