Gov. John Bel Edwards has declared a statewide state of emergency as coastal residents brace for the landfall of what's likely to be Tropical Storm Barry by the weekend.
Gov. Edwards said he's received information from meteorologists that suggests that the tropical system could dump a foot and a half of rain in some spots, which could cause widespread flooding - especially with higher river levels around the state.
"No one should take this storm lightly," Gov. Edwards said.
As of 1:30 p.m., the National Hurricane Center is classifying the system as "potential Tropical Cyclone Two".
The area's center is guesstimated at 28.3 N, 86.7 W. It is moving west, southwest at 8 mph. NHC cautions that the coordinates are inexact, because a clear, defined circulation has yet to be detected on radar.
NHC's forecast track calls for the storm to make landfall in western Louisiana on Saturday, though the location of landfall varies greatly because of uncertainty in the storm's center, which will greatly impact where it move.
The tropical disturbance is expected to move generally west-southwest through Friday until turning toward the shore over the weekend. The timing of that turn will greatly impact the landfall location.
Our area is under a tropical storm watch currently.
Warnings are expected to be issued in the next 24-48 hours before landfall.