Tropical Update 2011: TS Lee Slowly Nears Louisiana;Katia May Threaten US East Coast

By: hurricaneben , 12:42 AM GMT on September 03, 2011

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Tropical Storm Lee and Hurricane Katia both should be watched in the Lower 48 with Lee a more certain and imminent threat and Katia possibly more intense when near the US.

TS Lee
Let's start off with Tropical Storm Lee which is moving very slowly towards the Louisiana Coast now packing winds of 45 MPH. Some gradual further intensification is expected before coming ashore somewhere in Louisiana or Mississippi late tomorrow or early on Sunday as a strong tropical storm or possibly even a weak hurricane if it does take a little more time. Although the winds (mainly in gusts) still might cause some decent damage, the biggest threat somewhat remains to be the flooding concern. Potentially destructive coastal flooding might impact a good chunk of the Gulf Coast from Galveston to Pensacola and the rainfall also might prove to be a huge concern, I'm not too worried about the western side but the eastern side of the system in areas such as NOLA/Mississippi might get some very nasty flooding even inland as well. This probably won't be like Katrina but an Allison-type scenario unfortunately is rather existent although not too likely so let's hope not. Locally heavy downpours are already affecting much of Southern Louisiana with some areas already reporting minor flooding and this is more than 24 hours away from landfall. There exists the possibility of a few weak tornadoes as well but I'm a lot more concerned about the flooding. Flood Warnings, Flash Flood Warnings, Coastal Flood Watches and Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect for most of Coastal Louisiana and Mississippi at this time. All I can say is...just be prepared in case your area undergoes an evacuation because the flooding seems to be the biggest threat.

Hurricane Katia
Hurricane Katia has re-intensified today and should continue to gradually strengthen over the next few days possibly into a major hurricane by Sunday or Monday as it steers clear of the Caribbean then makes a hook back to the west and might come pretty darn close to the US East Coast if not making a direct hit or brush bringing at the very least some potentially dangerous surf and rip currents if not some heavy rainfall and wind as well, but that's several days out and should be watched casually because this has a lot of uncertainty and anything from a Florida threat to a safe fish spinner is possible at this time. Everyone in Bermuda and all along the US East Coast from Florida to Maine should be occosionally monitoring this system since this might pose a threat in the long term but the track still seems fairly uncertain so Lee is a much bigger short term threat to land.

Invest 94L has decreased in winds and organization as it enters cooler waters. It is now much less likely of any type of tropical cyclone forming as this races safely out at sea and the NHC gives this only a 10% chance of TC formation by Sunday evening.

A train of tropical waves over Africa should re-emerge over the Atlantic Ocean over the next several days and should be watched for some likely development. Its tracks cannot be determined at this time.

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About hurricaneben

Will devote this hurricane season to provide up-to-the-minute, basic information when a tropical system is threatening land. Both basins included.