Storm moving fast toward central US Gulf Coast

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Parts of the northern Gulf Coast could end up under a Tropical Storm Watch within the next day as the National Hurricane Center refines its forecast.

Tropical storm warnings are coming for parts of south Florida and the Keys, the NHC said, in a 9 a.m. special advisory.

BOOKMARK The Palm Beach Post's storm tracking map here.

Residents should pay attention to weather updates throughout the Labor Day weekend to remain aware of the progress of this disturbance.

The storm, which is now near the Bahamas, is moving north west towards the Gulf of Mexico.

Maximum sustained winds are at 30mph at the moment and maximum predicted wind speeds of up to 60mph are expected by Wednesday.

"Maximum sustained winds are near 30mph (45 km/h) with higher gusts".

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The storm has already begun lashing South Florida with high winds and heavy rains as it moved west-northwest at 16 miles per hour. An Air Force hurricane hunter is headed into Gordon this morning.

As of Monday morning, September 3, Tropical Storm Florence had sustained winds of 60 miles per hour and was moving west/northwest at 16 miles per hour. A storm surge watch is in place from the Mississippi-Alabama border to Navarre, Florida. Florida Gov. Rick Scott said the biggest impact is expected to be heavy rain, and urged people to stay vigilant.

Rain estimates in the 24 hours preceding 8 a.m.

Bands of rain swept South Florida as the winds picked up.

See the top 15 Hurricane Irma moments here. However, there is still plenty of uncertainty with the exact track and how much it will strengthen.

The local forecast shows the potential for a peak storm surge of 2 to 4 feet above ground in surge-prone areas through early Thursday afternoon. Although the track of the system is uncertain, a more westward track toward East Texas may help to increase Central Texas' rain chances late next week.

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