Dangerous Hurricane Zeta roars across Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama disrupting power to more than 1 million customers and creating gigantic storm surges along the coast

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Hurricane Zeta engulfs Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama on October 28, 2020. Picture via Twitter

As the latest overachieving storm in an unforgiving and record-setting season, Hurricane Zeta roared ashore in southeast Louisiana on Wednesday afternoon.

The powerful Category 2 hurricane, which struck near Cocodrie, La., intensified right up until landfall, defying earlier forecasts for a substantially weaker storm.

Shortly after crossing the coast, Zeta slammed into New Orleans, its eye moving directly over the city, cutting power to more than 80 percent of its residents.

City officials said that more than 200 trees were down across the city and that one man, electrocuted by downed power lines, died.

The storm unleashed wind gusts over 100 mph in both coastal Louisiana and Mississippi, and the high winds cut power to over 800,000 customers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

Coastal Mississippi was also subject to a storm surge that raised water levels nine feet above normally dry land at the coast, resulting in severe inundation.

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Gigantic storm surge along the coast of Mississippi during Hurricane Zeta. Picture: NOAA

Zeta will travel 1,250 miles in 24 hours

Zeta is now poised to race through central Alabama, northern Georgia and the Mid-Atlantic. That’s a trip of more than 1,200 miles in 24 hours, which averages out to 50 miles per hour. That’s faster than a vehicle on the interstate would be able to cover that distance — since the hurricane can take a direct route.

The storm could impact the United Kingdom into early next week.

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Hurricane Zeta map and path. via NOAA

Damaging winds could stretch into interior parts of Georgia, where gusts to 50 mph are forecast in Atlanta.

Torrential rain is expected all along its path, with widespread amounts of two to four inches and locally up to half a foot. Some flooding is likely.

Hurricane Zeta is a historic storm by many measures

When Zeta first formed on Saturday, it became the earliest 27th named storm on record in the Atlantic and marked only the second instance of this many storms in a calendar year, matching 2005.

But upon rapidly intensifying in the Gulf of Mexico and making landfall as a strong Category 2 hurricane in southeast Louisiana, it established several more significant milestones:

  • In its 26 hours prior to landfall, Zeta’s peak winds increased by 45 mph, the most on record in the Gulf of Mexico so late in the calendar year.

  • With maximum sustained winds of 110 mph, it is the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the United States this late in the calendar year since the Halloween Hurricane of 1899.

  • It became the record 11th named storm to make landfall in the country, extending the record set by Hurricane Delta when it struck southwest Louisiana earlier in the month. Prior to 2020, the most named storms to come ashore in a given season was nine in 1916.

  • It became the sixth hurricane to make landfall in the United States in 2020, tying 1985 and 1886 for the most in a year.

  • Zeta is the fifth named storm to make landfall in Louisiana in 2020, passing the previous calendar year record of four in 2005.

  • Zeta is the third hurricane to strike Louisiana in 2020 (in addition to Delta and Laura), tied with 1860 and 2005 for the most on record in a calendar year.

  • The wind gust of 71 mph clocked at New Orleans International Airport may be the strongest since Hurricane Isaac in August 2012.

More news about hurricane Zeta and this unprecedented hurricane season on TWP, Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle.

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1 Comment

  1. Why staying always in the path of Hurricanes? Can you not see all those places with Hurricanes and Tornadoes alleys are routes from Mexico to Canada?

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