Posted: Oct 2, 2013 3:37 PM by Daniel Phillips/Rob Perillo
As we go through this first week in October much of our attention is focused on a situation brewing in the tropics. Over the past several days we've kept our eye on a disturbed area that is just to the east of the Yucatan Peninsula, and it looks likely that this could be Tropical Storm Karen by Thursday.
The National Hurricane Center is currently giving a high chance (70%) of this system developing through Friday. Hurricane Hunters were investigating the system late Wednesday afternoon and found a broad elongated area of low pressure, near 1008mb.
Movement of the system has it entering the Gulf of Mexico early Thursday morning before making its way towards the Northern Gulf Coast. Currently Acadiana is not in the forecast track, nor major threat zone, but we all know how quickly things can change so it will certainly be worth watching.
As of Wednesday afternoon the track looks to take the storm just to our east with most models keeping it between Southeastern Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle. This area will be the most likely place to see tropical storm watches raised, and if the National Hurricane Center does decide to issue a watch or a warning they will likely come out Thursday afternoon.
The speed of the storm will bring a landfall Friday night into Saturday morning and could be a heavy rainmaker for the part of the country it impacts. This means that has the day goes on Friday the seas will be churned up, with swells building throughout the day and migrating westward across Acadiana's coastal waters.
As mentioned earlier, Acadiana is not in the current forecast tracks but watching how it interacts with the Yucutan Pennisula Thursday will tell us a lot more about where the storm is headed.
No matter where the forecast track is currently it will certainly be worth paying attention to over the next several days.
Based on rather consistent tropical models it will not be out of the realm of possibility that this system could become a small Category 1 hurricane prior to landfall Friday night.
The expected cool front for Acadiana should arrive Saturday night with the same front eventually capturing this tropical entity which could spell torrential flooding rains for portions of the SE U.S. northward into the Appalachians.
Be sure to stay tuned to KATC-TV 3 both on-air and online for all of the latest information regarding this storm.