Economy

Gulf Coast residents should keep an eye on potential storm

Gulf Coast residents should keep an eye on potential storm”

The second storm of the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season was expected to form later Wednesday or Thursday along the Gulf Coast and could make landfall around Louisiana on Saturday as a treacherous system.

"Barry could become a hurricane, depending on how long the system remains over the warm water", Kottlowski said. Highs in the upper 80s to low 90s inland, mid to upper 80s along the beaches.

Oil producers in the US part of the Gulf of Mexico have begun evacuating employees from their platforms ahead of a possible storm that is for now a tropical depression, Reuters reports, adding the storm could develop by this evening or tomorrow.

Lines of thunderstorms associated with the system on Wednesday extended far out in into the Gulf and battered New Orleans, were as much as 7 inches (18 centimeters) of rain hit the New Orleans metropolitan area over a three-hour period Wednesday morning, forecasters said.

The system will have the potential to produce heavy rainfall in Southwest Louisiana this weekend. There is also a good probability that a storm surge watch or warning will be issued for this event as well. The first named storm of the year was Subtropical Storm Andrea, which developed south of Bermuda on May 20 - before the official start of hurricane season - and weakened before posing any threat to land. A tornado or waterspout was also spotted near the University of New Orleans, WWL-TV said.

Regardless of the classification this system develops into, Louisiana and MS are forecast to see very heavy rain - more than a foot in some places, Brink said.

Thursday: It's possible we could be monitoring a tropical low pressure area along the northern Gulf of Mexico as it moves west.

"The city is protected to a project height of 20 feet. There is still a great deal of uncertainty regarding potential impacts, so please continue to monitor the forecast over the next several days for the latest information", the National Weather Service in New Orleans said in a tweet. A few even hint that the storm, which would be named Barry, will be a weak hurricane before it makes landfall again.

People in coastal areas should be prepared to protect property from minor to moderate coastal flooding later this week and this weekend. However, there is potential for the system to become a hurricane should it remain offshore into Saturday.

This means tropical storm conditions will take effect within 48 hours. Most offshore oil and gas rigs in the Gulf of Mexico are in the north-central and western portion of the basin. Storms will be strong, and potentially reaching severe status through the afternoon and evening. In order to support a tropical storm or hurricane, sea surface temperatures need to be about 27ºC.



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