Tropical Storm Gordon sputtered Wednesday after sweeping ashore overnight, saturating the Gulf Coast but sparing the region a new round of widespread destruction. However, no major damage or serious injuries were reported, other than the one fatality - a baby in a mobile home, struck by a large tree limb in Pensacola late Tuesday.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Gordon have moved into southeast Arkansas, bringing rain, the chance of flooding and a slight risk of weak tornadoes before it moves into Missouri and parts of Oklahoma. Tens of thousands of customers spent part of Wednesday without electricity.
It's way too early to know if either of those storms will have any impact on land, but Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham said attention should be paid: "It's the peak of hurricane season".
That was particularly worrisome in the Midwest, a region already inundated with water. But it was going out swinging: Forecasters said radar spotted possible tornados spun off by the storm overnight in southern Alabama and the Florida panhandle, and more were possible through Wednesday night in MS and western Alabama.
Along the Gulf Coast on Wednesday, where many schools and roads were closed, the authorities signaled that typical daily life would resume quickly.
In the Atlantic Ocean, Hurricane Florence, a Category 3 storm on a five-step scale, barreled toward Bermuda on Wednesday, packing maximum sustained winds of 125 miles per hour (205 kph).
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The search for two people "presumed submerged" was halted overnight, the San Bernardino County Fire District said in a statement. Rescuers had to call off the search until Sunday morning because it was too risky to put divers in the river after dark.
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Governors in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana all declared states of emergency to better mobilize state resources and National Guard troops for the storm.
"The service states that rainfall, will be possibly heavy at times, but the "... potential for any severe storms appears low at this time", in its Monday evening forecast. A dozen casinos that shut down were allowed to reopen at noon Wednesday.
While the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN http://www.hwn.org/) on September 5 formally secured operations initiated ahead of Tropical Storm Gordon, which had been forecast to become a Category 1 hurricane, the HWN is keeping close watch on Hurricane Florence, now a Category 3 storm still out in the Atlantic. "Beginning tomorrow, now that it's a named storm, and now that it's in the Gulf, we will probably have two briefings a day until it makes landfall".
August and September can be heavy traffic for hurricanes, especially for Florida.
In addition to Hurricane Florence, forecasters are also monitoring an emerging system off Africa's western coast that they said is likely to become a tropical depression later this week.