Hurricane Zeta Aims at Storm-Fatigued Gulf Coast

Hurricane Zeta, which strengthened into a Category 2 early Wednesday, is projected to make landfall along the southeast coast of Louisiana and turn towards New Orleans, with storm impacts also predicted to affect Alabama, Mississippi and western areas of the Florida Panhandle. Heavy rains are expected to reach Georgia and the Carolina’s by Thursday.

With wind gusts as high as 100 miles per hour and high storm surf expected, Mayor LaToya Cantrell urged New Orleans citizens to be prepared to shelter in place by Wednesday afternoon for those parishes which are not under evacuation orders. Rescue teams are on standby in Gulf Coast communities where evacuation orders have also been issued to storm-fatigued residents, having seen a record number of tropical systems this year.

Weather experts have run out of alphabetic names and have turned to the Greek alphabet to name the seemingly endless onslaught of storms affecting the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico regions this year. This is only the second time the Greek alphabet has been employed to name storms; the first was in 2005.