Home / National News / Tropical Storm Cindy makes landfall in Louisiana


(NEW YORK) — Tropical Storm Cindy made landfall in southwestern Louisiana near the Texas border early Thursday morning, bringing the threat of strong winds, rain and potentially-dangerous floods to several Southern states.

The National Weather Service has warned that the storm could cause “life-threatening flash flooding.”

A tropical storm warning is in effect from High Island, Texas, to Morgan City, Louisiana. But ABC News meteorologists said this warning is likely to end soon as Cindy weakens throughout the day.

Cindy is expected to slowly sweep across western and northern Louisiana and into southeastern Arkansas between Thursday night and Friday morning. The storm will then move into Tennessee later Friday, according to the National Weather Service.

As of 8 a.m. ET Thursday, the eye of the storm was located some 40 miles northwest of Lake Charles, Louisiana, and moving north at 12 mph. The storm’s maximum sustained winds had decreased to near 40 miles per hour, with higher gusts.

Although Cindy is expected to continue weakening over the next 48 hours, the National Weather Service said the weather disturbance could still produce a few tornadoes Thursday night from the lower Mississippi and Tennessee Valley regions to the central Gulf Coast.

There have been at least five tornadoes reported in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida in the past two days in relation to the approaching storm, according to ABC News meteorologists who are tracking Cindy.

The service also warned of storm surges of 1 to 3 feet of water above ground level along the coast and in areas with strong onshore winds.

“It should die out relatively quickly, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a lot of moisture with it,” ABC News chief meteorologist Ginger Zee said Thursday on Good Morning America.

“It squeezes against a cold front, and that’s why western Tennessee, southeastern Arkansas, all the way through western Pennsylvania will see the remnant plus the cold front, creating a potential for flash flooding,” Zee added.

According to the National Weather Service’s latest advisory, the storm is expected to dump a total of 3 to 6 inches of rain, with as much as 12 inches in isolated spots, over eastern Texas and western and central Louisiana, as well as southern and eastern Arkansas through Friday morning. Meanwhile, southern Mississippi, southern and central Alabama and far-western portions of the Florida Panhandle could see 2 to 4 inches of rain with as much as 8 inches in isolated spots.

“This rainfall could cause life-threatening flash flooding in these areas,” the National Weather Service said in its advisory.

The governors of Louisiana and Alabama both declared statewide states of emergency ahead of the storm.

Before Cindy made landfall Thursday, one person had already died from injuries related to the storm’s winds.

A 10-year-old boy died in Fort Morgan, Alabama, on Wednesday, according to the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office. The boy had walked outside a waterfront condo, where he and his family were staying, and was standing just a few feet from the door when a large wave knocked a log into him around 10:30 a.m. local time.

The boy, whose name has not been released, died at the scene, according to the sheriff’s office.

Prior to reaching land, the storm brought heavy winds and rain to some Southern states on Wednesday, including Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.

Residents in Lake Charles, Louisiana, uploaded images and video of the storm to social media on Wednesday as it battered the city with severe rain. One person even posted a video of people kayaking through the flooded streets of Lake Charles.

Meanwhile, social media users near the Florida panhandle shared video on Wednesday showing the shoreline edging closer as unusually large waves crashed on the beaches there.

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