The Latest: Cindy stationary as Gulf Coast braces for storm – Miami Herald

 In U.S.

The Latest on tropical weather (all times local):

10 p.m.

The National Weather Service has extended the tropical storm warning on the Gulf Coast eastward to the Alabama-Florida border.

Forecasters Tuesday night increased the warning ahead of Tropical Storm Cindy to include Lake Pontchartrain and the New Orleans metro area.

The storm was about 230 miles (370 kilometers) south of Morgan City, Louisiana, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph (97 kph). It was moving northwest at 7 mph (11 kph) and forecast to continue along that track before turning to the north Wednesday night.

Not much change in strength is expected Wednesday, with slight weakening beginning Thursday.

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8:45 p.m.

The National Weather Service says Tropical Storm Cindy is centered about 350 miles (563.24 kilometers) southeast of Galveston, Texas. Maximum sustained winds were clocked Tuesday evening at 45 mph (75 kph) and the storm has been nearly stationary in recent hours. A tropical storm warning has been issued for the Gulf Coast from San Luis Pass, at the western end of Galveston Island, to the mouth of the Pearl River, where the Louisiana-Mississippi border meets the Gulf of Mexico.

Forecasts say the storm could produce overall rainfall of 6-9 inches (15-23 cms) with isolated amounts of up to 12 inches (30 cms) in spots in southeastern Louisiana and southern parts of Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle through Thursday.

A tropical storm warning was expanded to a wider area Tuesday afternoon, now extending from San Luis Pass, Texas, to the mouth of the Pearl River on the Mississippi-Louisiana line.

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8:30 p.m.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has ordered the State Operations Center to raise its readiness level as Tropical Storm Cindy approached the Gulf Coast.

The center’s readiness would be raised from level four/normal conditions to level three/increased readiness as of noon Wednesday. Also, Abbott has activated four Texas Task Force 1 boat squads and two Texas Military Department vehicles squads of five vehicles each to respond to any weather-related emergencies.

Abbott also put on standby the Emergency Medical Task Force of the Department of State health Services, as well as Texas Military Forces aircraft and shelter and feeding teams.

A voluntary evacuation notice has been issued for those with medical and other special needs on the Bolivar Peninsula, between Galveston and High Island, Texas. The National Weather Service advises that services may be limited for those on the peninsula around high tide from Wednesday afternoon through Thursday morning.

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4:30 p.m.

Tropical Storm Cindy is meandering over the central Gulf of Mexico, and forecasters warn that it’s dumping heavy rains that could trigger life-threatening flash floods.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Cindy was located at 4 p.m. CDT Tuesday about 280 miles (450 kilometers) south of Morgan City, Louisiana — or about 360 miles (575 kilometers) southeast of Galveston, Texas. Maximum sustained winds were clocked at 45 mph (75 kph) and the storm has been nearly stationary in recent hours.

Forecasts say the storm could produce overall rainfall of 6-9 inches (15-23 cms) with isolated amounts of up to 12 inches (30 cms) in spots in southeastern Louisiana and southern parts of Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle through Thursday.

A tropical storm warning was expanded to a wider area Tuesday afternoon, now extending from San Luis Pass, Texas to the mouth of the Pearl River on the Mississippi-Louisiana line.

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3 p.m.

Louisiana’s emergency preparedness office says it is coordinating with local officials and readying resources in advance of Tropical Storm Cindy’s threat of heavy rain and flash flooding.

Gov. John Bel Edwards says the advance notice of the storm gives officials time to put emergency plans in place.

Louisiana was slammed with major flooding last summer from an unnamed storm that heavily damaged the Baton Rouge and Lafayette regions.

Cindy formed Tuesday from a system that had been developing in the Gulf.

The Louisiana National Guard has moved high water vehicles and helicopters into areas that could flood. The state says FEMA is moving 125,000 meals and 200,000 liters of water into Louisiana.

Edwards is encouraging Louisiana residents to monitor local media and check www.GetAGamePlan.org to ready for the storm.

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1:30 p.m.

Some Gulf Coast residents are bracing for heavy rain and possible flooding from Tropical Storm Cindy.

Larry Godfrey, who owns the Escatawpa (Ess-kuh-TAW’-puh) Hollow Campground in Alabama, near the state line with Mississippi, says the Escatawpa River is already high from rainfall, and he expects his campground will flood.

National Weather Service forecasters are warning of the possibility of more than 10 inches of rain for an area between Biloxi, Mississippi and Mobile, Alabama, by Friday morning.

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