Category 1 Hurricane Zeta is expected to reach the US coast late Wednesday-early Thursday, likely in southeast Louisiana, bringing strong winds, heavy rain as well as potential tornadoes and power outages.
Even if you don’t live along the Gulf Coast, heavy rains are expected to impact much of the southern US bringing potential severe weather, flooding, and power outages. Don’t be caught unprepared.
Zeta, the 27th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane in Mexico on Monday night in the Yucatán peninsula, north of Tulum, CNN reported.
As of 5 a.m. CDT Tuesday, Zeta had decreased in strength to a tropical storm and was located about 670 miles south of Mobile and was moving northwest at 14 mph, Alabama / AL.com reported.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has forecast Zeta to strengthen to a Category 1 hurricane again as it moves over the Gulf on Tuesday. When Zeta makes landfall in the US on Wednesday or Thursday, the storm is expected to be a Category 1 hurricane or a strong tropical cyclone.
Most estimates and two current models place the storm making landfall likely near Grand Isle, but at any rate, somewhere between Louisiana and Mississippi. However, landfall near Alabama or Florida is also possible.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a number of warnings, effective as of Tuesday, including hurricane and tropical storm warnings, as well as gale warnings and small craft advisories for the Gulf Coast that stretch along the central to Eastern coast of Louisiana, across the Mississippi and Alabama coasts, and along the Florida Panhandle.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency on Monday, ahead of Zeta’s arrival. The governor said the order has activated over 1,150 Louisiana National Guard personnel, as well as pre-positioning boats, high water vehicles, and helicopters in preparation for search and rescue efforts.
This record-setting 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is far from over and runs until November 30. Anyone living and states that border the Gulf Coast or the Atlantic should be prepared for hurricanes and severe weather – even if you live quite far inland, as the tropical systems can stall over land and drop heavy rains for days, causing flooding.
The most important thing anyone living in areas that can be affected by hurricanes should take away from this news – is to start getting prepared now.
Supplies are already short – don’t be unprepared. With supplies in stores already limited due to the coronavirus pandemic, it becomes even more urgent that you prepare an emergency plan should a hurricane or severe weather cause power failures, impact transportation, or access to food and water.
It’s important that you start right now with making a family emergency plan. This includes preparing your evacuation and communications strategy. You should make sure that every member of your family has a cell phone so that you can stay in contact should you get separated. Search for the best deals.
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Make sure to prepare an emergency kit that has at least a 3 day supply of food and water, as well as a flashlight and backup battery chargers for your cell phone and more.
The best source of information you can research online can be found at the NHC/NOAA preparedness website. You can visit the hurricane preparedness page of the National Hurricane Center and get information on everything you need to know to be ready.