Based off of the National Hurricane Center’s 10PM advisory, Hurricane Zeta still has 80 mile per hour winds but is moving at 13 miles an hour. It has also shifted mildly east, looking to put our New Orleans metro on the western side of its track. This is good news as the greatest impacts will be along and east of wherever Zeta’s center comes ashore.
It will be beginning to progress into the southern Gulf of Mexico at a point Tuesday, impacting our forecast for New Orleans and southeast Louisiana Wednesday. Landfall near Grant Isle, Louisiana still looks likely Wednesday night.
A Hurricane Watch is issued for all parishes shaded in red, while a Tropical Storm Watch is issued for all parishes shaded in yellow. These are issued 48 hours before the onset of tropical storm force winds.
The Hurricane Watch extends throughout Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama coastlines, while Tropical Storm Watches remain in effect north and west.
A Hurricane Watch is in effect from Morgan City, Louisiana, to the Mississippi/Alabama border, including Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and metropolitan New Orleans. A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect from the Mississippi, Alabama border to the Okaloosa, Walton County Line, Florida, and from west of Morgan City to Intracoastal City.
A Storm Surge Watch is in effect from Intracoastal City, Louisiana, to Navarre, Florida, including Lake Borgne, Lake Pontchartrain, Vermilion Bay, Pensacola Bay, and Mobile Bay.
Grand Isle, Louisiana will likely see between 4-6 feet of surge, while Lake Ponchartrain will likely see between 2-4 feet of surge. This is something the levee system can handle.
Tropical Storm force winds are area-wide concerns given Zeta’s current track. Anticipate an uptick in power outages while this is moving through late Wednesday, early Thursday.
Thankfully, with Zeta’s fast moving nature, rainfall totals will be between 3-6 inches in most neighborhoods, but localized higher amounts will be possible. As always, flash flooding could occur if any heavy bands dump large amounts in little time.
Right now, model guidance is agreeing a good bit, however, there could still be changes. 50 miles east or west makes a big difference as heaviest impacts will be along and east of wherever Zeta’s center tracks onshore. 50 miles further east, minimal impacts. Current track or 50 miles further west, more widespread impacts for much of southeast Louisiana.
Start simple preparations, as they will need to be completed Wednesday morning at the latest. Use tonight and tomorrow to prepare before weather conditions deteriorate. Power outages will be likely along projected track.
We’ll have more information on WGNO News and WGNO. com all night tonight!