Tropical Development off Louisiana Coast Possible this Week
Forecasters with the National Hurricane Center say an area of low pressure over the southern United States could be responsible for tropical development off of Louisiana's coast later this week. The area of concern over the next five days stretches from Galveston Texas to the east of Panama City Florida.
The system which is in the process of forming is actually part of a decaying frontal boundary that is stretched across southern Alabama and Georgia. Forecasters anticipate a trough of low pressure forming to the south and west of the current location and should that formation occur in the offshore waters there is potential for tropical development.
As of early this morning (07/11), forecasters are only giving the trough of low pressure a 30% probability of strengthening into a tropical depression or named tropical system. Development of the system, if at all, would be slow to take place so no emergency preparations are necessary at this time.
What you should be preparing for are some heavy tropical downpours over the next several days. Meteorologist Bradley Benoit with KATC Television offered these two graphic illustrations of what computer forecast models are suggesting for south Louisiana between today and next Sunday. Read Bradley's Blog and forecast discussion right here.
The GFS Model solution is calling for rainfall amounts of almost three inches in the Lafayette area and just over two inches in Lake Charles.
Meanwhile, the European Model solution suggests that rainfall amounts in the Lafayette area will be slightly less than two inches and not quite one inch in Lake Charles. We remind you that these are model solutions and NOT official forecasts.
Oh, and if you're heading to the beaches of Lower Alabama and Florida this week, you might want to check and see what's playing at the movie theater, which bowling alleys are open, if there is a sale at the outlet mall in Foley, or if you have enough movies downloaded to keep disgruntled family members occupied while it rains, a lot. Because these same forecast models suggest the Redneck Riviera will be inundated with heavy rain most of the week.
And the beach forecast does call for an increased risk of rip currents from Dauphin Island to Destin as the week progresses.
Closer to home, another concern with "tropical downpours" is the potential for large amounts of rainfall in a short amount of time. When that happens many roadways around the area become flooded until the drainage system can catch up to the deluge, be mindful of that wherever your travel in South Louisiana this week.
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