SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - As major Hurricane Matthew batters the Bahamas and sets its sights on Florida, concerns are growing about the storm's future path.
The official forecast from the National Hurricane Center has begun a trend of curving Matthew southward toward the Bahamas by the middle of next week. Even though the storm would be weaker at that point, it's what could possibly happen beyond that that has some locals worried.
Some long-range forecast models indicate Matthew, or whatever would be left of Matthew, could enter the eastern Gulf of Mexico after looping around Florida's peninsula.
"While we are watching that Matthew could make a loop in the Atlantic and move back toward Florida or possibly even the southern Gulf, it's important to note that wind speeds decrease dramatically to a 45 mph tropical storm by Tuesday morning," said WLOX Chief Meteorologist Carrie Duncan.
"The northern Gulf Coast region should be protected from any tropical impacts next week due to northerly flow aloft behind a passing cold front," said WLOX First Alert Meteorologist Wesley Williams. "So, despite this possible loop in Matthew's future path which could put it in the Gulf, it is highly unlikely that areas along Mississippi's Gulf Coast will see any tropical impacts."