Hurricane warnings have now been issued from Grand Isle, Louisiana, northeast of Ocean Springs, Mississippi, including New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain, and Lake Maurepas. Sally continues to strengthen across the Gulf of Mexico with sustained winds of 80 km / h.
Storm surges of up to 7 to 11 feet are possible near the storm center and east of the expected landing. Along with the storm surge, extreme rainfall of over a foot is expected in some locations between southeast Louisiana and the west Florida panhandle.
Tropical Storm Sally is the 18th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season.
Flood clocks are in effect through Sunday in areas on the west coast of Florida, including Tampa, Bradenton, Port Charlotte and Fort Myers. 2 to 4 inches of rain is expected in these areas throughout the weekend.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency on the Saturday night before Tropical Storm Sally.
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In New Orleans, Mayor LaToya Cantrell issued a mandatory evacuation order for residents outside the city’s levee protection system. Evacuation begins at 6 p.m. on Sunday for the areas of the Venetian Islands, Irish Bayou and Lake Catherine.
For most forecasting models, Sally is moving toward the northern Gulf Coast and will likely land somewhere between New Orleans and Panama City late Monday or Tuesday. However, if the route continues to shift west or slow down, the landing may continue until Wednesday.
Once it reaches this area of the Gulf Coast, the steering patterns collapse and the system meanders near the coast.
Whether the meanders meander before landing off the coast or on land will not make much difference in terms of precipitation. In either case, there is the potential for significant flooding due to the slow forward movement along the Gulf Coast.
As of now, widespread accumulations of 4 to 6 inches are likely. However, there will be remote areas along the coast that can take in more than a meter of rain.
Another system, Tropical Storm Twenty, has formed in the central tropical Atlantic, according to the NHC. Twenty has kept winds of 35 mph.
Twenty are expected to intensify into a tropical storm tomorrow and a hurricane by next week, and if so, their name will be Teddy. The previous record for the earliest 19th named storm is October 4, 2005.
Already an active season
Many storms broke records because they were the earliest names, including Cristobal was the earliest “C” letter tower in recorded history and Hanna was the earliest “H” letter tower. All but three named storms (Arthur, Bertha, and Dolly) set records to be the earliest named storm for their respective letter.
Sally is just one of several systems in the Atlantic. The NHC is currently monitoring six areas: two tropical storms, two tropical depressions, and two tropical disturbances. Thursday was the climax of the hurricane season in the Atlantic.
“Tropical Storm Paulette is expected to intensify into a hurricane today,” said Haley Brink, CNN meteorologist. “Paulette is expected to head for Bermuda and potentially land as a Category 2 storm early Monday morning. Bermuda has a hurricane watch whose hurricane conditions are within 48 hours. Tropical storm conditions will affect Bermuda from Sunday afternoon and hurricane conditions start on Sunday evening. “
Another system to be observed is a wide area of low pressure southwest of the Cape Verde Islands. That system is now Tropical Depression 20. After Sally, there are only three names left on this year’s official list: Teddy, Vicky and Wilfred. After that, the NHC will use the Greek alphabet.
La Niña is officially here