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article imageHurricane warnings up for parts of Gulf Coast as Sally approaches

By Karen Graham     Sep 13, 2020 in Environment
Tropical Storm Sally is expected to strengthen into a hurricane and bring flooding rainfall, dangerous storm surge and damaging winds to the Gulf Coast beginning early this week.
Tropical Storm Sally6 is already spreading heavy rains along the southwest coast of Florida as it continues to trek northward. At the 8 a.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center, Sally was located 155 miles (250 kilometers) west of Port Charlotte, Florida.
Sally is moving toward the west-northwest at near 13 mph (20 kph), and a west-northwestward or northwestward motion is expected through Monday. Maximum sustained winds are close to 50 mph (85 kph) with higher gusts. The minimum central pressure is 996 mb (28.41 inches).
On the forecast track, The center of Sally will move over the southeastern and eastern Gulf of Mexico today, move over the north-central Gulf of Mexico tonight and Monday, and approach the north-central Gulf Coast within the hurricane warning area late Monday and Tuesday.
On Tuesday, Sally is forecast to make a turn toward the north-northwest along with a slight decrease in its forward speed. This slow-down in forward speed could result in long-lasting impacts from rainfall, storm surge and strong winds.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency ahead of the storm's arrival and noted on Twitter that parts of his state were ravaged by Hurricane Laura late last month.
"This when combined with the COVID-19 pandemic, can make us all weary," Edwards said on Twitter. "I implore Louisianans to take their preparations seriously.
New Orleans mayor Latoya Cantrell issued a mandatory evacuation order for areas that are located outside of the city's levee system. The order will go into effect at 6 p.m. local time on Sunday.
It should be noted that in less than 24 hours, Sally has gone from a mass of showers and thunderstorms east of the Bahamas on Friday afternoon - to a tropical depression on Friday evening - before becoming a tropical storm on Saturday afternoon. The waters of the Gulf are especially warm, with temperatures avering in the low 80s.
The NHC has issued Hurricane Warnings for areas from Grand Isle Louisiana to Ocean Springs Mississippi, including New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain, and Lake Maurepas and a tropical storm watch has been extended to cover the Alabama-Florida Border to the Ochlockonee River in Florida.
A storm surge warning was issued for Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, Lake Borgne, and Mobile Bay, and a storm surge watch was in effect from the mouth of the Mississippi to the Florida-Alabama border.
More about hurricane warnings, Gulf coast, Tropical storm Sally, category 2 hurricane, Atlantic
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