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TRACKING THE TROPICS: Potential storm could impact holiday weekend plans

The National Hurricane Center is giving a 20% chance of development to an area of unsettled weather in the western Caribbean.

MACON, Ga. - Hurricane season doesn't start until June 1st, but Mother Nature is suggesting we may get an early start this year.

The National Hurricane Center is giving a 20% chance of development to an area of unsettled weather in the western Caribbean.

As of Monday afternoon, two of the long-range models used on a regular basis continue to show signs of storm development in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend. The European forecast model is targeting the New Orleans area while the American forecast model is showing a further eastward track that would trend closer to Florida's west coast.

Whether a storm develops or not, and whether it gets a name from the National Hurricane Center, one thing we do know is the next 7 days will be unsettled, with enhanced rain chances, including during the upcoming holiday weekend. Current forecast data targets areas between Louisiana and the western part of the Florida panhandle for over 7 inches of rain. Locally, Middle Georgia could see another 3 to 4 inches of rain over the next week.

As of Monday afternoon, the takeaway is to keep an eye on the forecast, but we're not at a point that you would cancel your plans due to a tropical system. Due to uncertainty between the long-range forecast models, it's very difficult to make an accurate forecast on any track or strength of a possible system. Rain is promised, whether this system gets a name or not.

Stay tuned to WGXA News on-air and online for updates.

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