Tropical Storm Sally strengthened Monday afternoon and was upgraded to a category 2 hurricane, making its way across the Gulf of Mexico toward Mississippi and Alabama with 100 mph sustained winds. Sally s forecast to make landfall late Tuesday or Wednesday and bring life-threatening storm surges, strong winds and flash floods to the Northern Gulf Coast.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey ordered the state’s beaches to close Monday afternoon in preparation for the storm. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency Saturday. On Monday, the Hurricane Warning area included metropolitan New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas.
Sally is not expected to bring as intense surges and winds as Hurricane Laura, but storm surges levels could reach as high as 11 feet at the mouth of the Mississippi River. Sally will also bring heavy rain to parts of the Gulf Coast, the hurricane center said.