FIRST ALERT: Harvey to bring heavy rainfall to Gulf Coast

Published: Aug. 22, 2017 at 12:55 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 23, 2017 at 11:57 AM CDT
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SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - Tropical Depression Harvey formed in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Harvey is forecast to make a landfall in Texas later this week. But, then, its forecast path becomes a little more uncertain as the system could slowly drift eastward under weak steering currents.

This will allow for a heavy rain event for parts of Texas, Louisiana, and perhaps Mississippi this weekend into early next week.

Bottom line: Prepare for the possibility of heavy rainfall in South Mississippi beginning Sunday and continuing into at least Monday.

Rainfall amounts through Tuesday for South Mississippi are about three to six inches, based on a Wednesday forecast. Higher amounts are possible up to ten inches.

"While we're tracking Harvey, it's important to not get too wrapped up in the storm strength," WLOX First Alert Meteorologist Wesley Williams said. "Regardless of if Harvey becomes a hurricane or not, heavy rainfall will be the main threat to watch out for, not wind."

"Remember that it doesn't take a strong storm to bring a heavy rain threat," said Williams. "Tropical Storm Cindy from earlier this year taught us that even weaker systems can still bring a formidably torrential downpours that lead to flooding issues."

"One saving grace that should prevent significant development of this system will be wind shear," said Williams. "Wind shear rips tropical systems apart and prevents or at least hinders their development. And we have an upper low in the Gulf causing some wind shear. And a cold front moving in later this week from the north that will also add more wind shear to our region."

Another tropical wave near Florida, Invest 92L, that the National Hurricane Center is watching is not expected to impact South Mississippi's weather.

Hurricane season peaks in September.

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