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Five-day forecast puts Florida in the path of tropical storm-strength Ida

Ida was downgraded to a tropical depression Friday but is expected to become a tropical storm next week that could threaten Florida, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The latest forecast track puts the storm 260 miles off the coast of Tampa Bay at 1 a.m. Wednesday (live tracking map below).

But there's tremendous uncertainty in that track.

The so-called cone of uncertainty also lists the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

Ida was on the eastern coast of Nicaragua on Friday morning and was expected to reach Honduras later in the day. On Thursday it was upgraded from a tropical storm to a hurricane when winds reached 75 mph. It was later downgraded to a tropical storm and then to a tropical depression.

The storm is expected to return to the waters of the Caribbean, said Bay News 9 meteorologist Juli Marquez.

"Now, once that happens it's possible it could restrengthen," she said. "But if it gets to the Gulf of Mexico, there's still a lot of uncertainty about what will remain of the storm."

Wind shear will be high in that area, she said, which could rip the storm apart.

Tracking Ida

View Larger Map | Powered by hurricane-tracking software from Stormpulse.com

Five-day forecast puts Florida in the path of tropical storm-strength Ida 11/06/09 [Last modified: Friday, November 6, 2009 2:42pm]
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