Advertisement

WBTV Hurricane Tracker: Hurricane Ida is about to take off!

Tropical tracker
Tropical tracker(First Alert Weather)
Published: Aug. 27, 2021 at 8:58 AM EDT|Updated: Aug. 28, 2021 at 11:27 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - WBTV Hurricane Tracker: Here’s the latest on what to expect.

» This update is from August 28, 2021, at 11:23 a.m. from WBTV First Alert Meteorologist Leigh Brock.

The storm hasn’t strengthened much this morning, but major change is expected over the next few hours. Rapid intensification is likely. By this evening Ida could jump to major hurricane (Cat 3) status. It will likely be a Cat 4 by midday tomorrow. Landfall is projected to be along the Louisiana coast late tomorrow afternoon.

Hurricane Ida currently has sustained winds of 85 miles per hour with higher gusts. Hurricane-force winds extend out about 30 miles from the center. Tropical storm-force winds extend outward about 125 miles. The storm is moving NW at 16mph.

First Alert: Tracking Hurricane Ida
First Alert: Tracking Hurricane Ida(First Alert Weather)

Impacts across the Carolinas haven’t changed since earlier this morning. We still have the best chance for rain and possibly severe storms on Wednesday.

Stay tuned to WBTV for the very latest.

- Meteorologist Leigh Brock

» This update is from August 28, 2021, at 9:44 a.m. from WBTV First Alert Meteorologist Leigh Brock.

Hurricane Ida is currently a category 1 storm with 85mph winds. The storm is expected to strengthen to a category 2 storm this afternoon and a category 3 tonight. By the time it makes landfall late on Sunday, it could be a deadly category 4.

The storm is expected to make landfall along the Louisiana coast on Sunday afternoon. However, conditions will go downhill quickly during the day tomorrow. High winds, torrential rain and deadly storm surge will be the biggest concerns for areas in Louisiana and Mississippi. After making landfall, it will weaken but also slow down a bit. That means plenty of flooding rain is likely along the Gulf coast.

First Alert Doppler radar
First Alert Doppler radar(First Alert Weather)

Ida will head NNE on Monday and Tuesday, drenching Mississippi and Arkansas before it moves into Tennessee.

Our biggest concern in the Carolinas will be for Wednesday and possibly into Thursday. Obviously, many details still need to be hammered out since the storm hasn’t strengthened to its maximum potential or made landfall. However, the latest projections have the storm staying to our west. That may seem good but remember what happened when Henri moved just to our west. We had a whole day of tornado warnings. It does look like Ida will be farther away from us but still we should be on stand-by, especially on Wednesday. There could be a few storms left around on Thursday, but Ida will make its closest pass on Wednesday. That is when we have the best chance for thunderstorms. We will monitor the possibility of severe weather.

Stay tuned to WBTV for the very latest!

- Meteorologist Leigh Brock

» This update is from Aug. 27, 2021, at 11:34 a.m. from WBTV First Alert Meteorologist Al Conklin.

Strengthening Tropical Storm Ida will cross western Cuba as a category one hurricane this afternoon on its way into the Gulf of Mexico this weekend. Once over very warm open water, the storm is forecast to run through a cycle of rapid intensification.

The National Hurricane Center defines rapid intensification as “an increase in the maximum sustained winds of a tropical cyclone (Tropical Depression, Tropical Storm, Hurricane) of at least 35 miles per hour in a 24-hour period.” A cycle of this nature often occurs in environments where the storm is over very warm seawater (at least upper 80s), low vertical shear and little land interaction.

This appears to be the case with Ida this weekend.

It is with the above in mind that a hurricane watch has been posted for coastal Louisiana and Mississippi and a tropical storm watch is now up to the east along the Alabama coast.

Ida is forecast to make a U.S. landfall late Sunday along the Louisiana coast, ironically 16 years to the day when Hurricane Katrina struck the same region. The northern Gulf Coast region is bracing for winds well over 100 mph, rainfall of as much as 20 inches and large swells and storm surge Sunday and Monday.

Because this is still a developing system, there are many long-term aspects that will likely change over time. However, a broad-brush FIRST ALERT is up Tuesday through Thursday of next week, as most model data do drift the remnants of Ida into the Tennessee River Valley – west of Charlotte and the WBTV viewing area - and so we’ll have to be on guard for potential heavy rain and severe weather risks that could unfold here, most likely Wednesday into Thursday.

In the meantime, you can track Tropical Storm Ida and get updates along with the First Alert Weather Team by downloading the WBTV Weather App.

- Meteorologist Al Conklin

» This update is from Aug. 27, 2021, at 9:07 a.m. from WBTV First Alert Meteorologist Al Conklin.

Tropical Storm Ida will cross western Cuba this afternoon on its way into the Gulf of Mexico this weekend. Once over very warm open water, the storm is forecast to run through a cycle of rapid intensification.

Sea surface temperatures
Sea surface temperatures(First Alert Weather)

The National Hurricane Center defines rapid intensification as “an increase in the maximum sustained winds of a tropical cyclone (Tropical Depression, Tropical Storm, Hurricane) of at least 35 miles per hour in a 24-hour period.” A cycle of this nature often occurs in environments where the storm is over very warm seawater (at least upper 80s), low vertical shear and little land interaction.

This appears to be the case with Ida this weekend.

It is with the above in mind that a hurricane watch has been posted for coastal Louisiana and Mississippi and a tropical storm watch is now up to the east along the Alabama coast.

Tropical watches and warnings
Tropical watches and warnings(First Alert Weather)

Ida is forecast to make a U.S. landfall late Sunday along the Louisiana coast, ironically 16 years to the day when Hurricane Katrina struck the same region. The northern Gulf Coast region is bracing for winds well over 100 mph, rainfall of as much as 20 inches and large swells and storm surge Sunday and Monday.

Because this is still a developing system, there are many long-term aspects that will likely change over time. However, a broad-brush FIRST ALERT is up Tuesday through Thursday of next week, as most model data do drift the remnants of Ida into the Tennessee River Valley – west of Charlotte and the WBTV viewing area - and so we’ll have to be on guard for potential heavy rain and severe weather risks that could unfold here, most likely Wednesday into Thursday.

In the meantime, you can track Tropical Storm Ida and get updates along with the First Alert Weather Team by downloading the WBTV Weather App.

- Meteorologist Al Conklin

Copyright 2021 WBTV. All rights reserved.