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Marco forms; Louisiana threatened by storm and by Laura

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Posted at 10:59 PM, Aug 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-22 16:00:43-04

Tropical Depression #14 was upgraded to Tropical Storm Marco Friday night as Hurricane Hunters found pressures dropping while interrogating the storm shortly before 10pm.

Marco is expected to remain a tropical storm after grazing the Yucatan Peninsula late Saturday and then will be heading generally in a northwesterly direction toward the Northwest Gulf of Mexico early next week.

Hurricane forecasters are keeping Marco a tropical storm all the way to landfall along the mid-upper Texas Coast by late Tuesday, but their forecast confidence is below normal at this time.

Marco is expected to encounter upper level wind shear that could prohibit the storm from becoming a hurricane, but the extent of that limit is unknown...and it could also be weaker than currently forecast.

Marco is still expected to be close to hurricane intensity as it skirts to the south of Louisiana by Tuesday which does mean there will likely be increasing tides up to 2-4 feet, perhaps as high as 3-5 feet along the Acadiana Coast.

This could impact coastal communities from Cameron to Cypremort Point with water rising as early as Monday and increasing further Tuesday into Wednesday.

Very preliminary potential Acadiana impacts (these will change):

Then there's Tropical Storm Laura...

The poorly organized storm in the northeastern-most Caribbean is now expected to interact with the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola and Cuba which should limit any development and perhaps, weaken the system with time.

Nonetheless, whatever leftover system emerges in the Southeastern Gulf of Mexico by Monday is likely to intensify as it travels northwestward.

While the National Hurricane Center (NHC) did not shift Marco's track appreciably, it should be noted that Laura's landfall track which started near Mobile earlier Friday, shifted west toward the mouth of the Mississippi River Friday afternoon, and was nudged a little farther west to near Grand Isle Friday night.

There could be some 'unforecastable" interactions between Marco and Laura Tuesday into Wednesday, but the most likely scenario at this time for Acadiana residents to watch for is that if Marco turns more westward and has a landfall farther south than currently forecast by the NHC, then Laura could make landfall farther west too.

At this point, outside of increasing coastal tides with Marco, Acadiana may see much more in the way of wind and rain impacts from Laura...stay tuned and prepare for the possibility of at least one hurricane coming our way next week.

But with that being said, expect more significant changes to the forecasts.

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