NHC issues warning as Tropical Storm Isaac headed for US gulf coast

Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Atlantic - Caribbean Sea - Gulf of Mexico- Tropical Weather Outlook [PHOTO:NHC]

Mexico City: Tropical Storm Isaac swirled into the Gulf of Mexico early Monday, with U.S. forecasters saying it is expected to become a hurricane on Tuesday.

The storm had sustained winds of 100 kilometers an hour. It battered Haiti and Cuba and then lashed southern Florida as it headed toward the northern Gulf Coast.

The National Hurricane Center said Isaac could hit the Gulf Coast somewhere between Florida and Louisiana.

Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi have declared states of emergency as they brace for as much as 46 centimeters of rain from the storm.

U.S. energy companies shut offshore oil rigs and started closing coastal refineries.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu told residents to be prepared to live without regular water or power supplies for several days. He also urged them to leave if an evacuation order is issued.

Many did not leave in 2005 when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans. Katrina ravaged New Orleans and much of the Gulf Coast, killing more than 1,800 people and leaving thousands more homeless. Wednesday marks Katrina's seventh anniversary.
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