It may later become a regular Tropical Storm.
The official start of the Atlantic hurricane season is a week away but a disturbance in the northwest Caribbean just couldn't wait.
Dan Kottlowski, hurricane expert for AccuWeather, said he expects the weather system to turn into a named storm by the weekend.
While it does not appear that New Orleans is in this area at this time, if the path shifts westward, even to the slightest degree, it could bring that heavy rain into the city and surrounding areas.
"Locally heavy rainfall is forecast across western Cuba and over much of Florida and the northern Gulf coast into early next week", senior hurricane specialist Stacy Stewart said in Friday's tropical weather outlook.
Sensex flat with positive bias; Nifty above 10756
Japan's Nikkei too gained 0.40 per cent and China's Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.24 per cent. Singapore fell 0.23 per cent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.34 per cent.
Forecasters say chances are increasing for the first tropical weather system of the year in the Gulf of Mexico. The coastal Carolinas and southern Florida are expected to have more rain. There's a good bet that this develops into a weak tropical storm or tropical depression over the next 48 hours. This would make Alberto a strong subtropical storm, although well short of the 74 miles per hour threshold for hurricane strength.
Portions of the northern Gulf Coast are likely to experience tropical storm force winds and storm surge.
Heavy rain will likely begin to affect the central Gulf Coast region and the southeastern USA later this weekend and continue into early next week.
That system on Sunday and Monday likely will continue moving north and dumping heavy rains along the Gulf Coast. It's expected to stay at "tropical storm" status through the duration of its life, not strengthening into a hurricane.
Those winds will also kick up surf that could cause rip currents along the entire Gulf of Mexico shoreline over the holiday weekend.
Red flags warning of unsafe surf conditions are already flying along some beaches.