A hurricane warning has been issued for parts of Florida as tropical storm Alberto gathers strength in the Gulf of Mexico. The storm is expected to reach landfall later today and develop into hurricane conditions within the next 24 hours. As it passed, Alberto dropped 50 centimetres of rain on Cuba.Florida State Governor Jeb Bush has declared a state of emergency. Mandatory evacuation orders have been issued for low-lying areas. 26 shelters in 16 counties have been opened for those seeking shelter. Last year a record 28 storms hit the region, 15 of which went on to become hurricanes, including the devastating Katrina. Experts are predicting above normal activity this year, but not on last year’s scale.