Hurricane watches become warnings as Gordon is expected to intensify

Posted at 3:58 PM, Sep 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-03 17:58:13-04
Tropical Storm Gordon
Dark skies, strong winds and heavy rains hit the Florida Keys on Sept. 3, 2018 as Tropical Storm Gordon moved through.

MIAMI, Fla. (AP) – A hurricane warning has been issued for portions of the central U.S. Gulf Coast as Tropical Storm Gordon approaches.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said in its 5 p.m. EDT advisory that it expects Gordon to be a hurricane when it reaches coastal Mississippi and Louisiana sometime late Tuesday.

A hurricane warning is in effect for the area stretching from the mouth of the Pearl River in Mississippi to the Alabama-Florida border.

New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell says the city has “the pumps and the power” needed to protect residents from Tropical Storm Gordon.

Cantrell urged residents within the levee protection area to stock up on supplies and shelter in place.

However authorities issued a voluntary evacuation order for residents outside the levee protection system, including the Venetian Isles, Lake Saint Catherine and Irish Bayou areas.

The Louisiana coastal town of Grand Isle has also issued a voluntary evacuation order.

The storm is centered about 50 miles (85 kilometers) west-southwest of Fort Myers, Florida, and moving west-northwest at 17 mph (28 kph). After making landfall, it is expected to move inland over the lower Mississippi Valley on Wednesday.

Officials say maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph (85 kph) with higher gusts.

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