Tropical Storm Debby drenched much of Florida on Sunday as it stalled in the Gulf of Mexico, with the Panhandle possibly in its sights.
The massive storm sparked tornado warnings and reports of twisters across much of the state. Authorities in Highland County, according to The Associated Press, reported that one woman was killed in a home in Venus that may have been destroyed by a tornado.
Debbys lingering effects also could rain on the parade scheduled for the Miami Heat in downtown Miami on Monday.
The National Hurricane Center made a significant change in its forecast from the previous day, shifting the threat from coastal Louisiana toward Apalachicola and Cape San Blas.
But forecasters warned they still had low confidence in the track, which has shifted dramatically from southern Texas to the Panhandle and could change again.
In a morning advisory, forecasters acknowledged struggling with a very difficult and highly uncertain forecast. Computer models were in sharp disagreement over whether it would track west or turn east, but the latest thinking had Debby continuing slowly northward.
Tropical storm warnings were posted from Alabama across the Panhandle and down into Floridas Big Bend.
As of 8 a.m. Monday, Debby's center was essentially stationary about 90 miles south-southwest of Apalachicola. Debby's top sustained winds were around 50 mph with little change in strength expected over the next day or so. The forecast map indicated the storm could inch forward through the week, eventually coming ashore over the Panhandle. However, a storm's path is difficult to discern days in advance.
Much of the Gulf north of Tampa was already being raked by powerful gusts extending out 200 miles, with the strongest winds and heaviest rains on Debbys northeastern and landward side.
High surf was pummeling beaches and storm surge will be a concern as well, particularly for Apalachicola where bay waters could rise four to six feet.
Rainfall of up to 10 inches was expected along some sections of the northern Gulf coast.
In soggy South Florida, where some parts of Miami-Dade and Broward received about two inches of rain over the weekend, conditions were expected to begin slowly improving by Monday but not enough to ensure a dry Miami Heat parade.
David Ross, a forecaster at the National Weather Services west Miami-Dade office, said rain chances would drop only to about 50 percent.
Its not looking favorable, he said.