1 dead as Cindy spins severe weather along Gulf coast

Forecasters in Louisiana say Tropical Storm Cindy will bring the potential for a storm surge of up to 3 feet (0.91 meters) along the Gulf Coast.

From East Texas to southern Mississippi, Cindy is expected to drop 3-6 inches of rain and some isolated areas could see up to 12 inches of rain, the National Weather Service said.

The storm's maximum sustained winds had decreased to near 40 miles per hour (64 kph) Thursday morning with additional weakening expected, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

"After moving inland, winds associated with Cindy will diminish and the system will eventually be dubbed a tropical rainstorm", according to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski.

Tropical Storm Warnings have been issued from Mobile to Galveston - which means tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warned area within the next 12-to-24 hours.

Locations most likely to witness the heaviest rainfall include southeastern Louisiana, southern MS, southern Alabama and the western part of the Florida Panhandle.

Flooding was also reported on Alabama's Dauphin Island. Heavy rain and gusty winds is accompanying the storm as it moves in.

The storm is expected to make landfall Wednesday night or Thursday morning along the southwest Louisiana or southeast Texas coast, but its effects will be felt along a long swath of the coast because the storm is disorganized.

Alek Krautmann of the National Weather Service in Slidell, Louisiana, said Thursday's pattern would likely be much like Wednesday's: Bands of intermittent, sometimes heavy rain spinning onto the coast.

Remnants of Tropical Storm Cindy could bring two inches or more to Illinois, Kentucky and Missouri counties that stretch along the OH and Mississippi Rivers. The NHC said those living in areas stretching from the central Texas coast to the western Florida Panhandle should monitor the progress of Cindy. The National Weather Service expects most flooded roadways in the New Orleans area to be accessible by Friday.

"We are asking the public to remain vigilant while this the threat from Tropical Storm Cindy continues", said GOHSEP Director James Waskom.

On Wednesday morning, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency for the entire state in response to flash flooding and severe weather from the storm.

A few wind gusts may get as high as 40+ miles per hour.

Tropical Storm Cindy has made landfall in southwestern Louisiana, bringing rain and the threat of flash flooding and tornadoes.

  • Carolyn Briggs