Ida Weakens to Tropical Storm and Turns Northward, Poised to Make Landfall on Gulf Coast
As of 3:00 PM CST (2100 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Ida was located near latitude 28.4 north, longitude 88.5 west, or about 60 miles (95 km) southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River and about 165 miles (265 km) south-southwest of Pensacola, Florida.
Ida is moving toward the north near 18 mph (30 km/hr). A reduction in forward speed is expected over Monday night. On the forecast track, the center of Ida should reach the northern gulf coast Monday night. After landfall, Ida is expected to turn eastward on Tuesday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 70 mph (110 km/hr) with higher gusts. Weakening is expected Monday evening as Ida moves over cooler waters prior to making landfall and is expected to merge with a frontal zone on Wednesday.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 200 miles (325 km) from the center. The latest minimum central pressure reported was 991 mb (29.26 inches).
A tropical storm warning remains in effect from Grand Isle, Louisiana eastward to the Aucilla River, Florida, including New Orleans and Lake Pontchartrain, meaning that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 24 hours.
Rains from Ida are already moving across the coast within the warning area. Total storm accumulations of 3 to 6 inches, with isolated maximum storm totals of 8 inches, are possible through Wednesday evening from the central and eastern Gulf coast across the southeastern United States into the southern mid-atlantic states.
A dangerous storm tide will raise water levels by as much as 3 to 5 feet above ground level along the coast near and to the east of where the center makes landfall, as well as in areas of onshore flow in southeastern Louisiana. Near the coast, the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves.