Tracking the Tropics: Laura expected to become a hurricane on Tuesday as Marco weakens to a depression

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The National Hurricane Center has continued to monitor Tropical Storm Marco and Tropical Storm Laura as the storms approach the north-central Gulf of Mexico this week.

Tropical Storm Marco weakened significantly on Monday as it approached the Gulf Coast. Meanwhile, Laura is expected to strengthen once it hits the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

Tropical Depression Marco

Marco was downgraded from a hurricane back to a tropical storm Sunday night. The storm continued to produce heavy rainfall and gusty winds as it moved along the northern Gulf Coast on Monday.

By 11 p.m. ET, Marco had weakened even more down to a tropical depression with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph. The system was about 45 miles west of the mouth of the Mississippi River and moving northwest at about 9 mph.

The National Hurricane Center canceled all watches and warnings in connection with Tropical Depression Marco on Monday afternoon.

The storm is forecasted to become a remnant low on Tuesday and then dissipate by early Wednesday.

The system could dump 3 to 10 inches of rain across portions of the north-central Gulf, causing flash, urban and small-stream flooding. Rain totals related to Marco near Apalachicola, Florida reached as high as 11.81 inches on Sunday.

Tropical Storm Laura

Tropical Storm Laura is growing stronger as it moves toward the U.S. Gulf Coast and is forecasted to become a hurricane on Tuesday.

The storm pounded Haiti and the Dominican Republic with heavy rain over the weekend, killing 11 people, according to reports.

As of 11 p.m. Monday, Laura had 65 mph maximum sustained winds as it passed Cayo Largo, Cuba.

The storm is forecast to move away from Cuba and over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico overnight. Laura is then forecast to move over the central and northwestern Gulf of Mexico Tuesday night and Wednesday. Forecasters predict it will reach the northwestern coast of the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday night.

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for:

  • San Luis Pass Texas to Ocean Springs Mississippi
  • Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and Lake Borgne

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for:

  • Port Bolivar Texas to west of Morgan City Louisiana

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

  • South of Port Bolivar to San Luis Pass Texas
  • Morgan City Louisiana to the Mouth of the Mississippi River

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for:

  • Cuban provinces of Villa Clara, Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Mayabeque, La Habana, Artemisa, Pinar del Rio, and the Isle of Youth
  • Florida Keys from Craig Key to Key West
  • Dry Tortugas

TRACKING THE TROPICS

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