Tropical Storm Karen Weakens En Route to GulfBy: Val Powell - October 5, 2013
Good news for Gulf Coast residents. Tropical Storm Karen has weakened and according to The National Hurricane Center Karen’s maximum sustained winds have dropped to 40 mph, diminishing its potential impact to the region. The center reported on Saturday afternoon that the storm was stalled about 130 miles south-southwest of Morgan City, La .
A tropical storm warning is still in effect from Morgan City, LA as well as the Gulf region of Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. Though a storm warning is likely to be in effect through Sunday, forecasters expect the storm’s energy to continue to dissipate. Rain build up is expected to reach 1 to 3 inches over the central Gulf Coast and southeastern U.S. by Monday night, with scattered areas reaching up to 6 inches.
At the hurricane center in Miami, forecasters said the storm no longer had a chance of strengthening into a hurricane.
On Friday at state of emergency was declared in Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida and Alabama. The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Interior Department recalled workers, that were affected by the government shutdown, to assist state agencies in preparation for the storm. Mandatory evacuation were also ordered by state and local officials – but that was Friday.
Now that the threat has diminished surfers at Florida’s Pensacola Beach, were taking advantage of the big waves that reached as high as 8 feet. Officials are however, still advising the public to exercise caution.