Batten Down The Hatches! Our area of disturbed weather in the Northern Gulf of Mexico has been classified as Potential Tropical Cyclone Two, which means the National Hurricane Center expected to this system to become Tropical Storm Barry with only a slight increase in organization.
Regardless, significant impacts appear poised for Louisiana and South Mississippi, and potentially as far west as southeast Texas. However, the forecast continues to show increasing direct impacts for most of southeast Louisiana and South Mississippi.
LATEST TRACK — Takes the system with a landfall as a Category 1 Hurricane with max winds of 75-80 on Saturday morning over Acadiana near Lafayette, Louisiana. This would put much of southeast Louisiana within the “wet & stormy” side of the tropical system. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this track shift further east closer to New Orleans and southeast Louisiana…something to monitor closely. The system still has a window to intensify more than forecast.
TIMING — Conditions will begin to go downhill along the coastline in particular by Friday morning-mid day with tropical storm force wind gust possible as early as late overnight Thursday. Primary impact days for flash flood threat, possible power outages from tropical storm force sustained winds & possible hurricane gusts late Friday into Saturday mid day.
HURRICANE WATCHES — Issued for nearly the entire Louisiana Coastline from the Mouth of the Mississippi to Cameron Parish south of Lake Charles. A Watch is issued 48 hours in advance of when winds of at least 39+mph(Tropical Storm Force) are possible. This is to give people a lead time to prepare. Power outages will be possible. Stock up on supplies this evening. Tropical Storm Force wind gusts on the coast begin late Thursday night into Friday mid day.
Expect additional watches to be issued further inland tomorrow. And upgrades to warnings along the coast by Thursday night.
STORM SURGE WATCH — Issued for south Louisiana from Pearl River to Cameron Parish. 3-6 feet of coastal flooding inundation possible. Low-lying will be susceptible to dangerous coastal flood rise outside of levee protection.
RAINFALL PROJECTIONS — Widespread 6-10+” of rainfall between Thursday and Sunday morning with likely hot spots of 15-20” of rain wherever the system comes ashore & just east of where the system moves inland. Flash Flooding will be a major concern with this system. Rainfall totals will shift depending on where the system comes ashore.
Time to prepare is now. While there remains uncertainty in exactly where likely Tropical Storm or potentially Hurricane Barry will make landfall Friday-Saturday between Southeast Texas and Southeast Louisiana, both of our most trusted forecast models are showcasing a significant flash flooding event for a large chunk of the state Thursday-Sunday.
Clear your storm drains, pick up loose items around the yard, stock up on your essential supplies.