Tropical Storm Nate is expected to become a hurricane this weekend

The Florida Panhandle is likely to see Hurricane Nate this weekend

It has been a devastating 2017 Hurricane season thus far but the latest storm might be a big rainmaker. Tropical Storm Nate, is expected to use the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico to propel it to hurricane status.

For now, Florida’s west coast that took the brunt of Hurricane Irma is likely to be spared any major rain or winds. They tropical storm seems likely to stay far enough out in the Gulf of Mexico to spare the Suncoast residents any serious trouble.

At the moment a hurricane warning has been issued for a stretch of the U.S. Gulf Coast from Grand Isle, Louisiana, to the Alabama-Florida border.

According to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, they are instructing residents in those areas to brace for possible storm surges amid the expected strengthening of Tropical Storm Nate.

The storm battered Central America with rain this week, killing at least 21 people.

The center says the storm is likely to strengthen Friday over the northwestern Caribbean Sea before a possible near-hurricane-strength hit on the Cancun region at the tip of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

Forecasters warn that the storm, after crossing open water, could then smash into the northern rim of the U.S. Gulf Coast as a hurricane.

According to reports out of Mexico as well as Central America, this has been a killer with plenty of rain.  As pf 8:30 A.M. today the damage caused by Tropical Storm Nate has prompted Costa Rican officials to postpone a World Cup qualifying soccer match between that country and Honduras, which had been scheduled for Friday night.

The president of the Costa Rican Football Federation says the game will now be played Saturday afternoon in San Jose, the Costa Rican capital.

The storm killed at least seven people across Costa Rica.

Jim Williams is the Washington Bureau Chief, Digital Director as well as the Director of Special Projects for Genesis Communications. He is starting his third year as part of the team. This is Williams 40th year in the media business, and in that time he has served in a number of capacities. He is a seven time Emmy Award winning television producer, director, writer and executive. He has developed four regional sports networks, directed over 2,000 live sporting events including basketball, football, baseball hockey, soccer and even polo to name a few sports. Major events include three Olympic Games, two World Cups, two World Series, six NBA Playoffs, four Stanley Cup Playoffs, four NCAA Men’s National Basketball Championship Tournaments (March Madness), two Super Bowl and over a dozen college bowl games. On the entertainment side Williams was involved s and directed over 500 concerts for Showtime, Pay Per View and MTV Networks.