Hurricane Delta is over the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico and is strengthening again.
It is forecast to make landfall in southwest Louisiana as a category 3 hurricane on Friday. The immediate Houston area should experience winds that may gust to 30 mph on Friday, while the coast of Galveston may see gusts as high as 50 mph.
4 p.m. update from the National Hurricane Center
Winds are now at 115 mph as Delta moves northwest at 12 mph. The center of the storm is forecast to make landfall in southwest Louisiana on Tuesday afternoon.
The storm, which quickly intensified to a Category 4 before entering the Gulf, lost some of its punch when it made first landfall Wednesday morning along the Yucatan Peninsula. Another landfall is expected sometime Friday afternoon along the Louisiana coast.
Watches and warnings along the Gulf Coast:
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for... * High Island Texas to Ocean Springs Mississippi including Calcasieu Lake, Vermilion Bay, Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and Lake Borgne
A Hurricane Warning is in effect for... * High Island Texas to Morgan City Louisiana
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for... * West of High Island to San Luis Pass Texas * East of Morgan City Louisiana to the mouth of the Pearl River, including New Orleans * Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for... * East of the mouth of the Pearl River to Bay St. Louis Mississippi
Impacts on Houston
Houston could get some rain and gusty winds over the next couple days, especially Friday, but overall we should not have any major widespread inland impacts from the hurricane. There is a Tropical Storm Warning, however, in effect along the coast from the west end of Galveston. Rip currents, wave runup, and elevated tides will impact our local coasts through Friday. The farther northeast you go on the Gulf Coast, the worse those impacts will be as the storm gets closer.
Interactive tropical tracker
You can track the latest on Hurricane Delta's path and forecast track here:
Hurricane Delta forecast cone
Hurricane Delta spaghetti models
Key messaging from the National Hurricane Center 10 a.m. Wednesday
1. Life-threatening storm surge is expected near and east of where Delta makes landfall on Friday, and a Storm Surge Warning is in effect from High Island, Texas, to Ocean Springs, Mississippi. The highest inundation of 7 to 11 feet is expected somewhere between Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge and Port Fourchon, Louisiana. Residents in the warning area should promptly follow advice given by local officials. The storm surge risk remains high despite the forecast decrease in intensity before landfall since Delta is expected to grow in size.
2. Hurricane-force winds are expected Friday afternoon and evening somewhere within the Hurricane Warning area between High Island, Texas, and Morgan City, Louisiana. Hurricane-force winds will also spread inland across portions of southern Louisiana near the path of Deltas center Friday evening and Friday night.
3. Significant flash flooding and minor to moderate river flooding are likely in parts of Louisiana Friday and Saturday, with additional flooding in portions of the central Gulf Coast into the Lower Mississippi Valley.