Tropical Storm Emily to spark localized flooding, disruptions across Florida to end July

By: Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather

Tropical Storm Emily will unload torrential rainfall and raise the risk of flooding and rip currents in central and southern Florida into Tuesday.

The system formed over the Gulf of Mexico, just west of Tampa, Florida, during early Monday morning. Tropical Depression Six was upgraded to Tropical Storm Emily a few hours later.

Since Emily is so close to land and will soon move inland, additional strengthening is unlikely through Tuesday.

Emily moved ashore near Anna Maria Island, Florida, at 10:45 a.m. EDT Monday. Anna Maria Island is near the southern entrance of Tampa Bay.

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Severe weather in the US 2017 -- tornadoes, snowstorms, flooding, hail
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Severe weather in the US 2017 -- tornadoes, snowstorms, flooding, hail
Abdel Salah, the owner of Sam's Food and Liquor Store surveys damage after a series of tornados tore through in New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S., February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ben Depp
Heavy thunderstorm clouds fill the sky over Center City Philadelphia, PA, on Feb. 25, 2017. (Photo by Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Residents clear their cars and street of snow in Weehawken, New Jersey, as the One World Trade Center and lower Manhattan are seen after a snowstorm in New York, U.S. March 14, 2017. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
PERRYVILLE, MO - MARCH 01: A utility pole was downed during last night's tornado on March 1, 2017 in Perryville, Missouri. At least one person was killed when the tornado crossed interstate 55. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
Birds sit on some branches in Central Park in New York on March 14, 2017. Winter Storm Stella dumped sleet and snow across the northeastern United States on Tuesday but spared New York from the worst after authorities cancelled thousands of flights and shut schools. Blizzard warnings were in effect in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate New York, but were lifted for New York City, the US financial capital home to 8.4 million residents, where snow turned to sleet, hail and rain. / AFP PHOTO / Eric BARADAT (Photo credit should read ERIC BARADAT/AFP/Getty Images)
PERRYVILLE, MO - MARCH 01: A house along Pcr 906 is destroyed after last night's tornado on March 1, 2017 in Perryville, Missouri. At least one person was killed when the tornado crossed interstate 55. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
Heavy thunderstorm clouds fill the sky over Center City Philadelphia, PA, on Feb. 25, 2017. (Photo by Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
PERRYVILLE, MO - MARCH 01: A shed for farm equipment on Pcr 906 collapsed and metal sheeting was tangled in trees after last night's tornado, on March 1, 2017 in Perryville, Missouri. At least one person was killed when the tornado crossed interstate 55. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
PERRYVILLE, MO - MARCH 01: A house and garage were destroyed on Hwy V after last night's tornado on March 1, 2017 in Perryville, Missouri. At least one person was killed when the tornado crossed interstate 55. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
A resident clears the street of snow in Weehawken, New Jersey, as the Empire State Building and Middle Manhattan are seen after a snowstorm in New York, U.S. March 14, 2017. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
Debris covers a street in New Orleans East after a series of tornados tore through New Orleans and other parts of Louisiana, leaving trees, power lines and homes and businesses leveled, in New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S., February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ben Depp
Tien Nguyen cleans up debris in "Q" Nail studio on Chef Menteur highway which he and his wife own, they survived the tornado by sheltering in the bathroom, a tornados tore through New Orleans and other parts of Louisiana, leaving trees, power lines and homes and businesses leveled, in New Orleans, Louisiana, February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ben Depp
Two snowmen sit in Central Park in New York on March 14, 2017. Winter Storm Stella dumped sleet and snow across the northeastern United States on Tuesday but spared New York from the worst after authorities cancelled thousands of flights and shut schools. Blizzard warnings were in effect in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate New York, but were lifted for New York City, the US financial capital home to 8.4 million residents, where snow turned to sleet, hail and rain. / AFP PHOTO / Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
Trailers lie on their sides behind a Procter and Gamble warehouse after a tornado ripped through the area on Sunday in Albany, Georgia, U.S. January 24, 2017. REUTERS/Tami Chappell
A snowplow clears snow in Times Square during a snowstorm in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S. March 14, 2017. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
A gas sign from a gas station sits in a tree nearby after a tornado ripped through the area on Sunday in Albany, Georgia, U.S. January 24, 2017. REUTERS/Tami Chappell
Friends used there snow day to go sledding on a hill at 47th street northwest and Massachusetts Avenue in Washington on March 14, 2017. Winter Storm Stella dumped sleet and snow across the northeastern United States on Tuesday but spared New York from the worst after authorities cancelled thousands of flights and shut schools. Blizzard warnings were in effect in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate New York, but were lifted for New York City, the US financial capital home to 8.4 million residents, where snow turned to sleet, hail and rain. / AFP PHOTO / Tasos Katopodis (Photo credit should read TASOS KATOPODIS/AFP/Getty Images)
A police car pushes a cab stuck on a snow and sleet-covered street in New York on March 14, 2017. Winter Storm Stella dumped sleet and snow across the northeastern United States on Tuesday but spared New York from the worst after authorities cancelled thousands of flights and shut schools. Blizzard warnings were in effect in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and upstate New York, but were lifted for New York City, the US financial capital home to 8.4 million residents, where snow turned to sleet, hail and rain. / AFP PHOTO / Jewel SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
The Rustic Barn, an event hall, which suffered major tornado damage, is seen from an unmanned aerial vehicle in Canton, Texas, April 30, 2017. REUTERS/Brandon Wade TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Homeowners clean up debris after a tornado hit the town of Emory, Texas, U.S. April 30, 2017. REUTERS/Brandon Wade
Homes are severely damaged after a tornado hit the town of Emory, Texas, U.S. April 30, 2017. REUTERS/Brandon Wade
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"As the system moves on an east to northeast path over central Florida during Monday night, it is likely to weaken to a tropical depression," accordong to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Pydynowski.

Emily to cross Florida with flooding downpours

Emily will cause locally gusty winds with and without thunderstorms and create rough surf along both the east and west coasts of central and southern Florida.

Locally strong and frequent rip currents are likely, and seas may be too rough for small craft.

However, it is the rainfall that will be the most problematic.

"Rainfall of 2-4 inches will be common, but local amounts near 8 inches are possible," Pydynowski said.

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Motorists should be prepared to seek an alternate route as roads that drain poorly during heavy rainfall will likely become flooded.

Major Florida cities at risk for street and poor drainage area flooding include Tampa, Sarasota, Fort Myers, Naples, Melbourne, West Palm Beach, Fort Pierce, Fort Lauderdale and Miami.

"Emily will emerge along the east coast of Florida sometime on Tuesday," Pydynowski said.

Emily to strengthen over Atlantic Ocean later this week

Emily is likely to regain strength and could become a hurricane over the Atlantic at midweek. Rip currents and rough surf will be an issue in some locations.

Strong west to southwest winds aloft will likely prevent Emily from making a northward turn toward the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts late this week.

Only if these steering winds aloft become more southerly would Emily move back over the United States.

However, seas will build offshore of the Atlantic coast of the U.S. and around Bermuda as the week progresses. How rough surf conditions get will depend on Emily's strength and proximity to the coast.

Bathers should be alert for strong and frequent rip currents, while small craft operations may want to exercise caution outside of protected intercoastal waters from Florida to Massachusetts.

Atlantic bears watching as August progresses

Elsewhere in the Atlantic, rapid tropical development is not likely over the next few days.

There are a few clusters of thunderstorms moving westward off the coast of Africa that are being monitored.

Dry air, dust from the Sahara Desert and strong westerly winds aloft will prevent rapid organization and strengthening as has been the case in recent weeks, according to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski.

"However, in the coming weeks, if these negative development factors diminish, then the Atlantic could get busy in a hurry as we move toward the heart of the hurricane season," Kottlowski said.

During August and early September, the chance of tropical storm and hurricane formation increases exponentially.

The peak of the Atlantic hurricane season is during the middle of September as water temperatures are at their highest, the atmosphere is very moist and winds aloft are light.

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