An area of disturbed weather in the Gulf of Mexico south of the Louisiana coast has been designated as the 2023 Hurricane Season's eighth named storm. The National Hurricane Center upgraded what was Potential Tropical Storm Nine to Tropical Storm Harold in the late night hours of Monday into Tuesday and now that system is poised to make landfall in the continental United States.

Based on the storm's location and current movement the minimal tropical storm should be onshore in southern Texas by Noon today. Tropical Storm Warnings and Watches have been posted for portions of the Texas coast. The warnings are in effect from the mouth of the Rio Grande River to Port O'Connor Texas. Tropical Storm Watches are in effect from Port O'Connor to Sargent Texas.

Of course all of the watches and warnings and apparently all of the beneficial rainfall associated with Tropical Storm Harold will stay well to the south of Louisiana. There were a few showers kicked up by the system yesterday but for the most part, all Louisiana experienced from the storm system was an increase in winds and an increase in fire danger because of dry conditions exacerbated by those winds.

Elsewhere in the tropics, named storms Franklin and Gert are struggling to say intact. Gert was at the point of losing its tropical characteristics or dissipating early this morning. While Franklin was very poorly organized and was drifting to the north.

On its current track, Franklin will impact the Dominican Republic tomorrow and then move out to sea. The forecast does call for Franklin to restrengthen and become a hurricane by this weekend. But it should be well out into the open Atlantic when that happens.

The Hurricane Center is also monitoring two other tropical waves in the open Atlantic. Both of those systems appear to be ocean-only storms based on forecast models and potential tracks.

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