LATEST DISCUSSION AND OUTLOOK
At 700 AM CDT (1200 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Barry was located near latitude 29.3 North, longitude 91.9 West, placing the center at 50 miles west-southwest of Morgan City, Louisiana and 95 miles south of Lafayette, Louisiana. Barry is moving toward the northwest near 5 mph (7 km/h), and a turn toward the north is expected tonight or Sunday. On the forecast track, the center of Barry will make landfall along the south-central Louisiana coast during the next several hours. After landfall, Barry is expected to move generally northward through the Mississippi Valley through Sunday night.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 70 mph (115 km/h) with higher gusts. Additional strengthening is forecast before landfall, and Barry is expected to be a hurricane when the center reaches the Louisiana coast during the next several hours. Steady weakening is expected after Barry moves inland.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 km) from the center. The National Ocean Service station at Eugene Island, Louisiana recently reported sustained winds of 71 mph and a wind gust of 85 mph.
The estimated minimum central pressure based on surface observations is 991 MB (29.26 inches). An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft is currently en route to investigate Barry.
CURRENT WATCHES & WARNINGS
A Hurricane Warning is in effect from Intracoastal City to Grand Isle.
A Hurricane Watch is in effect from the mouth of the Mississippi River to Grand Isle, and from Intracoastal City to Cameron.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect from the mouth of the Pearl River to Grand Isle, for Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas (including metropolitan New Orleans), and from Intracoastal City to Cameron.
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect from east of the Mouth of the Pearl River to the Mississippi/Alabama border.
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect from Intracoastal City to Biloxi and for Lake Pontchartrain.
A Storm Surge Watch is in effect from Biloxi to the Mississippi/Alabama border.
HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND
STORM SURGE: The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide…
Intracoastal City to Shell Beach…3 to 6 ft
Shell Beach to Biloxi MS…3 to 5 ft
Lake Pontchartrain…3 to 5 ft
Biloxi MS to the Mississippi/Alabama border…2 to 4 ft
Lake Maurepas…1 to 3 ft
Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle and can vary greatly over short distances. For information specific to your area, please see products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office.
RAINFALL: Barry is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 10 to 20 inches over south-central and southeast Louisiana and southwest Mississippi, with isolated maximum amounts of 25 inches. These rains are expected to lead to dangerous, life threatening flooding over portions of the central Gulf Coast into the Lower Mississippi Valley beginning as early as later this morning. Across the remainder of the Lower Mississippi Valley, total rain accumulations of 4 to 8 inches are expected, with isolated maximum amounts of 12 inches. By early next week, Barry is expected to produce rainfall accumulations of 4 to 8 inches across western portions of the Tennessee Valley.
WIND: Hurricane conditions are expected in the Hurricane Warning area later this morning, with tropical storm conditions currently spreading across the area. Hurricane conditions are possible within the Hurricane Watch area later this morning. Tropical storm conditions are occurring across the Tropical Storm Warning area in southeastern Louisiana at this time. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the Tropical Storm Watch area later today. Wind gusts to tropical-storm force in squalls are possible along portions of the coasts of Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle through tonight.
TORNADOES: A few tornadoes are possible through tonight across the southeast Louisiana, southern Mississippi, and southern Alabama.
Next update from the National Hurricane Center will be out at 10:00 am. I’ll have a post out with the update shortly after.
All information from the National Hurricane Center.