Hurricane Delta Grows Stronger – Expected to be a Major Hurricane
That little area of disturbed weather that moved into the Caribbean Sea late last week has certainly grown into a formidable tropical cyclone. It's expected to grow even stronger too. That's what has many residents of the northern Gulf on edge this morning as we all look southward through the Gulf and into those very warm waters of the Caribbean Sea.
As of the 0400 AM CDT advisory from the National Hurricane Center, Delta's center of circulation was located about 420 miles east southeast of Cozumel Mexico, or about 125 miles south of Grand Cayman. The storm has strengthened to a category 2 on the Saffier-Simpson scale. The maximum sustained winds are estimated to be 100 mph.
Forecasters believe that conditions are favorable for the storm to intensify into a category 3 storm later today and maybe even to category 4 status by the time it interacts with the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico later tomorrow.
The intensity forecast for the system does suggest that it will weaken, a little before it makes landfall. That landfall is now projected to be on the southeastern Louisiana coast sometime late on Friday night or very early Saturday morning. But remember, there is a fairly large margin of error with hurricane forecast tracks this far out in time. So, the track will likely be adjusted.
The tropical models seem to be in fairly good agreement that Hurricane Delta will clip the northern tip of the Yucatan during the day tomorrow. The system will then head north toward the Louisiana coastline. It is expected to begin a slow turn to the northeast before it crosses the coast.
This should keep most of Acadiana on the western side of the storm's circulation but we will still likely be close enough for tropical downpours and strong tropical-storm-force winds. Again, that is if the current forecast track holds true.
This is a fluid situation. You'll want to check back frequently for the latest advisories and how best to keep you and your family safe in this storm.