Tropical Storm Gordon Track Chart, Advisory #9

Current Location: 26.1N, 82.3W
Geographic Reference: 110 Miles North of Key West, FL
Movement: West-northwest at 15 mph
Max Winds: 50 mph gusting to 65 mph
Current Hurricane Severity Index: 3 out of a possible 50 points (1 size, 2 intensity)
Max Predicted Hurricane Severity Index: 6 out of a possible 50 points (2 size, 4 intensity)
Current Radius of Tropical Storm-Force Winds: 45 miles
Max Predicted Radius of Tropical Storm-Force Winds: 50 miles
Organizational Trend: Steady
Forecast Confidence: Average

Key Points
1. We have adjusted the final landfall point to near Gulfport Mississippi Tuesday night.
2. Max winds at landfall could be near 70 mph.
3. The eastward track shift reduces the risk of tropical storm conditions for the New Orleans area.

Our Forecast
There have been some significant developments since earlier this morning. Radar imagery several hours ago indicated a well-defined eye-like feature south of Marco Island Florida, a good bit north and east of earlier estimates. A recon plane passed through the center of Gordon around that time but found winds were only in the 45 mph to 50 mph range. A more recent reconnaissance plane passage found winds of 50 mph around the center of Gordon. In fact, Gordon now looks less organized than it did 3-4 hours ago.

The northeastward repositioning of the center means that an eastward adjustment to the track was necessary. We have shifted the landfall point to near Gulfport, MS around 10pm tomorrow night. Conditions in Gordon’s path will be favorable for at least some strengthening, but we think that Gordon’s intensity will tend to fluctuate up and down over the next 24-30 hours until the center reaches the coast. Our forecast has max sustained winds of 70 mph as Gordon reaches the Mississippi coast tomorrow night.

Once Gordon moves inland, it should quickly weaken to a tropical depression and then a remnant low. Most of Gordon’s tropical storm-force winds will be near and out to about 50 miles east of the track – mostly confined to the Mississippi coastal counties. The primary threat inland will be from heavy rainfall along Gordon’s path from Wednesday through Friday.

Expected Impacts Offshore
Squalls will begin reaching the deepwater areas off the southeast Louisiana coast by early Tuesday morning, meaning the last full day for any helicopter evacuations of offshore personnel will be today. Wind gusts in squalls could reach up to 80 mph on Tuesday, along with locally very rough seas.

Expected Impacts on Land
Southern Mississippi Through Arkansas: Locally heavy rainfall could result in street flooding that leads to travel delays Tuesday afternoon through Friday. The greatest risk for southeast Louisiana and southern Mississippi will be Tuesday and Wednesday, while the risk for Arkansas will mainly be Thursday and Friday. Tropical storm-force winds along the Mississippi coast may result in power outages Tuesday night. Tides may run 4-6 feet above-normal along the southeast Louisiana and Mississippi coasts Tuesday night, resulting in minor coastal flooding.

Our next advisory will be issued by 9 PM CDT

Meteorologist: Chris Hebert

Forecast Confidence:   Average Hurricane Severity Index
Fcst Hour Valid Lat. Lon. Max Sustained Winds Max Gusts Category Size Intensity Total
0 3PM CDT Mon Sep 03 26.10N 82.30W 50 mph 65 mph Tropical Storm 1 2 3
12 3AM CDT Tue Sep 04 27.50N 85.30W 60 mph 70 mph Tropical Storm 2 3 5
18 9AM CDT Tue Sep 04 28.30N 86.50W 65 mph 75 mph Tropical Storm 2 3 5
24 3PM CDT Tue Sep 04 29.30N 87.70W 70 mph 80 mph Tropical Storm 2 4 6
30 9PM CDT Tue Sep 04 30.10N 88.70W 70 mph 80 mph Tropical Storm 2 4 6
33 12AM CDT Wed Sep 05 30.50N 89.30W 60 mph 70 mph Tropical Storm 2 3 5
36 3AM CDT Wed Sep 05 30.90N 89.80W 40 mph 50 mph Tropical Storm 1 1 2
42 9AM CDT Wed Sep 05 31.50N 90.60W 35 mph 45 mph Tropical Depression 0 1 1
48 3PM CDT Wed Sep 05 32.30N 91.70W 30 mph 40 mph Remnant Low 0 0 0
60 3AM CDT Thu Sep 06 33.40N 92.60W 30 mph 35 mph Remnant Low 0 0 0
72 3PM CDT Thu Sep 06 34.20N 93.80W 30 mph 35 mph Remnant Low 0 0 0
84 3AM CDT Fri Sep 07 34.70N 94.70W 30 mph 30 mph Remnant Low 0 0 0

The yellow cone represents track error from the previous five hurricane seasons. Over the past five hurricane seasons, the center of the storm tracked within the yellow cone 75% of the time. The cone does not represent the forecast uncertainty in the current advisory for this storm. In addition, hurricane-force winds, very high tides, large waves, and heavy rainfall can often extend well outside the yellow cone.