State of emergency for killer Hurricane Nate
A STATE of emergency was declared in Louisiana and Mississippi last night as Hurricane Nate approached the US central Gulf Coast.
The storm, which has already killed at least 21 people in Central America, was forecast to increase to a Category 2 hurricane by the time it made landfall, with sustained winds of 90mph.
Evacuation shelters were opened and those most at risk told to abandon their homes.
In addition to hurricane warnings, a new tropical storm alert was issued in Florida and some offshore oil platforms were being evacuated.
The National Hurricane Centre said that Nate could raise sea levels by up to 7ft and added New Orleans in Louisiana to its latest warning. Some 1,300 National Guard troops had been mobilised.
Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards urged residents to prepare for rain, storm surge and severe winds and be undercover by ‘dark on Saturday’.
He said Nate was forecast to move quickly, rather than stall and drop tremendous amounts of rain.
Officials hoped that meant New Orleans would not run into problems and its pumps would handle the water.