The National Hurricane Center is now forecasting that Hurricane Delta will make landfall around 7 p.m. near Avery Island, Louisiana, which is south of Lafayette.
Earlier this week, the hurricane’s track was further to the east. There were then fears that Delta could track even further east, much like Sally did last month, and impact the Alabama Gulf Coast. Instead, the storm tracked further to the west and is forecast to impact western Louisiana.
The National Weather Service has issued a storm surge warning from High Island, Texas, to Ocean Springs, Mississippi. The NHC is predicting that the storm surge will be heaviest between Rockefeller National Wildlife Refuge and Morgan City, Louisiana, somewhere between 7 and 11 feet.
The Alabama Gulf Coast should see a storm surge today and tonight of between one and three feet.
Delta has weakened as it has entered the northern Gulf of Mexico. It hit Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula as a category four Hurricane, but currently is a category three. It is anticipated that Delta will make landfall as a category two hurricane.
Baton Rouge and New Orleans should be on the eastern side of the eye of Hurricane Delta, meaning that they should get very heavy rainfall today and tonight. Western Louisiana has already been impacted by Hurricanes Laura and Beta.
Birmingham ABC 33/40 meteorologist James Spann said there will be a high-end risk of a few isolated, brief tornadoes over Alabama, especially the western half of the state, on Saturday.
Northwest Alabama could be the part of the state most impacted by Delta. The Shoals area could see 25 mile per hour winds around 7 a.m. on Sunday.
Sustained winds of Delta are currently 105 miles per hour, with gusts of 120 miles per hour. Despite the weakening, the NHC warns that this is still a very large and powerful storm.
2020 has been the busiest year for hurricanes and tropical storms on record. The Alabama Gulf Coast was directly impacted by Hurricane Sally, which came ashore in Baldwin County last month. Cleanup and repairs are still underway in Mobile, Baldwin and Escambia Counties.