National Meteorological Service
Updated at 11:00 am ET
Tropical Storm Barry formed on Thursday in the Gulf of Mexico and could become a hurricane later Friday, according to the National Hurricane Center. Forecasters say the storm could cause a storm surge and heavy rains in Louisiana.
It is now expected that Barry will become a Category 1 hurricane shortly before Saturday's landing, with maximum winds of 75 mph.
According to forecasters, the tropical storm could cause a storm surge of 3 to 6 meters in a coastal region that is already struggling to cope with the huge floods that have ravaged the Mississippi in recent weeks.
The tropical storm warning comes one day after New Orleans has been the victim of "widespread flooding in the street and power outages" due to heavy storms, such as the "rain storm". reported the WWNO member station.
Louisiana's governor, John Bel Edwards, declared the state of emergency for the entire state, warning: "No one should take this storm lightly. Well in Louisiana, low intensity does not necessarily mean a low impact. "
The system is currently located about 95 miles south-southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River in Louisiana. Thursday morning, its maximum winds were only 40 mph – but the storm is expected to strengthen as it moves to the west and the north.
Louisiana officials have already begun preparations. As the WWNO member station reports, LSU closes its campus on Friday and officials are telling coastal residents "to heed every warning" of what one expects to be a dangerous storm.
The last storm, Barry, stalled like a tropical storm in 2013; this could become a hurricane within 48 hours.
"Hurricane conditions are possible on the north-central Gulf coast in a matter of days," said the National Hurricane Center.
The center issued three alerts for the expected storm:
- Storm surveillance, from the mouth of the Pearl River on the border between Louisiana and Mississippi and Intracoastal City, south of Lafayette;
- A hurricane watching from the mouth of the Mississippi River up to Cameron, La, near the Texas border;
- A tropical storm oversees the mouth of the Mississippi River to the north to the mouth of the Pearl River.
In addition, the hurricane center says that "one or two tornadoes are possible tonight and this Friday in the southern parts of Louisiana and Mississippi."
Forecasters say the system will likely dump more than a foot of rain in some areas, predicting "accumulations of 10 to 15 inches near and inside the central Gulf coast until early." next week, with isolated rainfall amounts of up to 20 inches ".
The storm is moving at only 5 mph. Forecasters expect it to continue at a slow pace, generating "a long-term threat to the cost of the Central Gulf and inland to the Mississippi Valley throughout the weekend. until early next week.