Tropical Storm Laura continues north to Arkansas
Just before 1am on Thursday morning, Hurricane Laura came inland near Cameron, Louisiana with 150mph maximum sustained winds. Catastrophic storm surge and wind has devastated southwest Louisiana overnight. As of the 1 pm advisory, Laura is now a tropical storm and has sustained winds of 65mph. Further east in the WBRZ Weather and Baton Rouge area, there is a chance of downpours, isolated tornadoes, and even tropical storm force winds (39mph+ for at least one minute) through this evening. Showers and storms will continue overnight and into Friday morning.
TORNADO WATCH has been issued for the entire viewing area until 4 pm Thursday. Tropical rain bands may produce brief, tornadoes. The cells will be moving very quickly so if a warning is issued, please immediately take shelter in a low-level, interior room away from windows.
FLASH FLOOD WATCH has been issued for the entire viewing area through Thursday evening. Tropical rain bands will be able to produce heavy downpours and isolated street and poor drainage flooding. Use caution on the roads and never drive over water-covered streets.
WIND ADVISORY is active for areas east of the Mississippi River. Winds will likely be sustained between 25-39mph throughout Thursday.
STORM SURGE WARNINGS are posted for the Louisiana Coast from the Texas border to the mouth of the Mississippi River. Surge could reach 15 to 20 feet from Johnson Bayou to Rockerfeller Wildlife Refuge and Calcasieu Lake, 8 to 12 feet from Intracoastal City to Morgan City including Vermilion Bay, 4 to 7 feet from Morgan City east to the Mouth of the Mississippi River.
The Next 24 Hours: Into Thursday afternoon, tropical rain showers will continue across the metro. Isolated tornadoes will remain a threat. Feeder bands associated with weakening Tropical Storm Laura could cause downpours, and potentially areas of flooding. Wind could gust over 40mph at times, especially west of the Amite River. This could create some spotty power outages. Have a way to receive warning information in the event a flash flood or tornado warning is issued for your area. You can get warnings from our app on your Apple or Android device. (Click links to download). Rain will begin to taper overnight.
After That: Even when Laura weakens and moves well north and east of the local area, plenty of tropical moisture will be left behind. Therefore, scattered to widespread showers and thunderstorms will bubble up in the daytime warming on Friday. Weather should transition back to a typical August pattern over the weekend, though afternoon showers are still in the forecast.
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