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Tropical Storm Nestor forms in Gulf of Mexico, takes aim at Florida: ‘Residents should prepare now’

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ABC News(NEW YORK) — A tropical disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico strengthened to Tropical Storm Nestor Friday afternoon as it takes aim at the Florida Panhandle.

Nestor will continue to strengthen and then make landfall along the Florida Panhandle near Panama City sometime Saturday morning.

The biggest threat with this storm will be storm surge, as ocean water could rise up to 5 feet from Apalachicola to Cedar Key, Fla. Water could rise up to 4 feet as far south as Clearwater.

Storm surge warnings have been issued from Apalachicola to Clearwater.

“Residents should prepare now for the chance of flooding & power disruption,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis tweeted Thursday.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards added, “Until we know the exact track of the storm & the potential impact areas, it is important for everyone to stay informed & prepare now. Hopefully, most of the severe weather will remain south of Louisiana, but we must stand ready in case the conditions change.”

Up to 6 inches of rain is possible in the Florida Panhandle.

Winds aren’t forecast to be too strong, with gusts near 50 mph possible.

The storm is forecast to weaken after landfall as it crosses through Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas.

About 2 to 4 inches of rain could fall in the Carolinas.

By Sunday night, after the storm crosses the Carolinas, it could spread some rain and gusty winds into the Mid-Atlantic and even into the coastal areas of the Northeast, from New Jersey to New York City and into southern New England.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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