BATON ROUGE, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — Gov. John Bel Edwards warned Wednesday that Hurricane Delta is expected to bring significant impacts well into central Louisiana after it makes landfall Friday as what is expected to be a major hurricane of at least a Category 3 in strength.
“We’re not just speaking to people in coastal areas of our state,” Edwards said during an afternoon briefing. “In fact, we don’t expect the hurricane to become a tropical storm until just about the time it exits Northeast Louisiana.”
Meteorologist-in-Charge Benjamin Schott with the National Weather Service in New Orleans said there is still some uncertainty about the exact track and intensity of the storm, but those factors are expected to become more clear as Delta moves off of Mexico and into the warm waters of the Gulf.
In the meantime, Schott said the entire Louisiana coastline needs to prepare.
“You are at risk, and you don’t have to be in the cone to see impacts,” said Schott, adding that tropical-storm-force winds could be seen more than 100 miles from the center of the storm. “So even if the storm makes landfall somewhere in the center of our coastline, it’s possible both Lake Charles and New Orleans could see tropical-storm-force winds.”
Edwards, Schott, and state emergency preparedness officials are urging residents to be ready and in place to ride out the storm by sunset Thursday.
Earlier Wednesday, Edwards requested a pre-landfall federal declaration of emergency in a letter to President Donald J. Trump.
“Hurricane Delta is a dangerous storm that will bring strong winds, heavy rain, life-threatening storm surge and flooding to coastal Louisiana, and I am hopeful President Trump will quickly approve my request for a federal emergency declaration,” Gov. Edwards said. “Already, we are coordinating with our federal partners to respond, as we have been since the start of the COVID pandemic in March and through several tropical events, including the devastation of Hurricane Laura in Southwest Louisiana. All Louisianans should use today to prepare for Hurricane Delta, heeding the direction of their local leaders when it comes to evacuations.”
- Click here to read the Governor’s letter to the President.
The governor’s office is also offering updates about Delta, Hurricane Laura response and recovery and COVID-19 through its texting system. People may opt-in by texting ‘HurricaneDelta’ to 67283 and sign up for phone calls by going to Smart911.
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