Travelers looking to avoid Tropical Storm Nate may find it's not yet so easy to change plans.
The latest advisories from the National Hurricane Center predict that Nate will reach hurricane status by the time it swirls into the northern Gulf of Mexico, and make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. Forecasters have issued storm surge watches, hurricane watches and tropical storm watches for parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.
Officials have already blamed rains from Tropical Storm Nate for at least 22 deaths in Central America.
(In August, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration raised its tropical storm and hurricane forecast for this year, predicting an "extremely active season." It expects 14 to 19 named storms, including five to nine hurricanes and two to five major hurricanes. Nate is the 14th named storm of the season, and is poised to become the ninth hurricane. The Atlantic hurricane season ends in November.)