Tuesday, 02 March, 2021


Tropical Storm Laura brings life-threatening flash flooding over Dominican Republic, Haiti

Two Potential Tropical Storms headed to mainland US by Monday Tropical Depression Thirteen looks to reach the South Florida coast by Monday morning as Hurricane Laura
Bennie Garza | 26 August, 2020, 22:23

The NHC said in its 1 p.m. update that Laura was 200 miles southeast of both Lake Charles, La., and Port Arthur, Texas, and had maximum sustained winds of 140 mph - well above Category 4 strength. Tropical Storm Marco has a head start and is already in the Gulf of Mexico, and is expected to make landfall on Monday. On the forecast track, the center of Laura will move near or over portions of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico this morning, near or over Hispaniola this afternoon and tonight, and near or over eastern Cuba Sunday and Sunday night. A hurricane watch has been posted on the Louisiana coast.

Marco was a hurricane most of Sunday, but the National Hurricane Center said it weakened overnight.

In the potential target zone for both storms is New Orleans, which was devastated by Hurricane Katrina nearly exactly 15 years ago."There is still plenty of uncertainty", said Bradley Harvey, a meteorologist with the commercial forecaster Maxar. "We are dealing with not only two potential storms in the next few hours, we are also dealing with COVID-19".

Crews armed with megaphones in the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo had urged dozens of residents in flood-prone areas to evacuate before Laura's heavy rains hit.

If Laura goes over land, Puerto Rico and the mountains of Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Cuba could tear it apart and not make it much of a threat to the mainland United States, meteorologists said.

It seems fitting for such an unusual twin threat to arrive in 2020, said University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy.

Seven to 11 of the named storms could become hurricanes with winds at 74 miles per hour or more, including three to six major hurricanes during the season, NOAA scientists said.

Officials in the Florida Keys, which Laura might pass over, declared a local state of emergency and issued a mandatory evacuation order for anyone living on boats, in mobile homes and in campers.

"This is unlike anything we have seen", he said. Tourists staying in hotels were warned to be aware of hazardous weather conditions and consider changing their plans starting Sunday.

Marco's forecast cone shows continued wind weakening in the coming two days as it meanders westward along the Louisiana and Texas coastlines.

Gov. John Bel Edwards of Louisiana on Saturday requested a federal emergency declaration from the White House, as he warned that Marco and Laura were forecast to affect the state in quick sequence.

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