Tropical storm warning issued for Louisiana's Gulf Coast

Credit National Hurricane Center  NOAA

Credit National Hurricane Center NOAA

This year's first named Atlantic storm formed in April, marking the third year in a row a named storm formed before hurricane season officially began.

A pedestrian keeps himself dry as he crosses Howard Avenue in the rain in Biloxi, Miss., Tuesday, June 20, 2017.

With Tropical Storm Cindy expected to dump rain over the area this week, St. Tammany Parish government will give out sandbags at five locations Tuesday and Wednesday (June 20-21). A number of MS communities are handing out sandbags as rain threatened low-lying areas along rivers and bayous. This could lead to flooding in low-lying areas and along creeks and rivers.

A widespread swath of more than 5 inches of rainfall is expected from southeastern Louisiana through southern MS into southern Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle. I would not be surprised if a flash flood watch is issued at some point tonight or tomorrow.

Gov. John Bel Edwards says the advance notice of the storm gives officials time to put emergency plans in place.

That's the earliest a named storm has formed in that part of the Atlantic.

Some Gulf Coast residents are bracing for heavy rain and possible flooding from Tropical Storm Cindy. Street flooding is expected, and some homes may be vulnerable as well.

According to the statement issued by the governor's office, the National Weather Service has warned that rain from the system will create a potential for significant flash flooding.

The state of emergency "will remain in effect until the threat diminishes".

Areas about 100 miles from where the storm comes ashore will see the highest surge due to the shape of the storm.

While the low-pressure center is stationary in movement, waves of tropical moisture are streaming on the eastern side of the circulation.

Already some flooding was reported on Alabama's Dauphin Island and flood control locks and gates were being closed along Louisiana's bayou-marbled coast. Double red flags snapped in the wind on the public beach at Gulf Shores in her state, warning visitors to stay out of the pounding surf. "But more or less, the impact was very, very minimal", he said, adding that there was some minimal storm impact in neighbouring islands as well, based as preliminary assessments.

The National Hurricane Center issued a tropical storm warning for the Louisiana Gulf Coast from MS to Texas and a tropical storm watch for a small swath of the Texas Gulf Coast.

Tropical storm Cindy in the Gulf of Mexico could bring severe thunderstorms to East Mississippi throughout the week, according to the National Weather Service in Jackson. It is now producing 40 miles per hour sustained winds as it moves west at 23 miles per hour.

One system is located near the Yucatan Peninsula and portions of the southeastern Gulf of Mexico. "On the forecast track, the centre of the tropical storm will continue to move across the south-eastern Caribbean Sea today", the NHC said.

The University Police Department is in contact with local emergency management on the Gulf Coast and in Hattiesburg, and is keeping Southern Miss administrators informed of changes and potential impacts.

The warning is in effect from Cameron, Louisiana, to Intracoastal City. Wind gusts of 40 to 60 miles per hour are possible.

The system is moving to the northwest and should reach the coast by late Wednesday.

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