Hurricane Ike Heads for Texas

September 9, 2008 at 8:47 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A stubborn ridge of high pressure in the upper levels of the atmosphere is refusing to budge.  That’s good news for New Orleans, as it means that Ike will continue on a westerly course.  But that means the Texas coast will likely bear the brunt of Ike’s next landfall.

After ravaging Haiti, The Turks & Caicos, the southern Bahamas, and Cuba, it now appears that we will see a Friday night landfall on the middle Texas coast, probably somewhere around Corpus Christi.  There is still enough uncertainty, however, that the entire Texas coast must be watchful.

But right now, it appears that the area north of Corpus Christi could be dealing with a Category 3 hurricane, with winds of 110 to 120 mph as the weekend begins.  Ike will weaken of course, as it moves inland.  But very heavy rain and wind gusts to 70 mph may affect San Antonio by midday Saturday.  Austin could see the same heavy rain, and gusts to 50 or 60 mph (not good news for the UT game that afternoon). 

A lot depends on the future track, but there is a good chance that by Saturday evening, we could see heavy rain and gusts of 30 to 40 mph here in North Texas.  The heaviest rains will be on the east side of storm’s track.  So whether it moves west of Fort Worth, or east of Dallas Sunday morning will mean a big difference in how much rain we get.  But for now, plan on a wet Saturday night and Sunday morning, with rains tapering off by late Sunday.

You can keep up with the latest forecast track from the National Hurricane Center here:

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at4+shtml/204416.shtml?5day#contents

Chief Meteorologist David Finfrock

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