Cristobal Forecast Puts Acadiana in Tropical Bullseye
There are a lot of things that will change in regard to the track taken by Tropical Storm Cristobal between today (June 3rd) and this Sunday when the storm is expected to threaten the northern Gulf Coast. But one thing is almost assured, the effects of the storm will be felt somewhere along Louisiana's coast between now and then.
The latest tropical model guidance appears to place Acadiana in the bullseye for a direct impact by the storm. Please remember, tropical weather models, are NOT an official forecast. Use this information for planning purposes only. Rely on the National Hurricane Center and trusted local media for official information.
That being said the latest model runs do suggest a slight shift to the east of the current forecast track, Still, the majority of Louisiana's coastline is still included in the cone of uncertainty at this time.
Just to give you an idea of how uncertain the forecast track for Cristobal is when extrapolated over five days, some models predict a landfall near Lake Charles while others suggest the storm will make landfall as far east as the Florida/Alabama state line.
As of early this morning ( 4 am CDT), Cristobal was centered less than 50 miles off the Mexican coast in the Bay of Campeche. The storm is anticipated to make landfall in Mexico later today. This interaction with land could also weaken the system to tropical depression status.
However, forecasters do believe the system will push back out over open water in the coming days and be pulled northward toward Louisiana's coast. As of now, most forecast models predict Cristobal will interact with the northern Gulf Coast as a strong tropical storm. However, there is the potential the storm could reach minimal hurricane status by projected landfall late Sunday or early Monday morning.
As is the case with all tropical systems the forecast is not written in stone and it will change. The next few days will determine just how significant the impact of the system will be in our state and what parts of the state will receive the brunt of Cristobal's fury.