Hurricane watch now includes New Orleans area
Forecasters say a hurricane watch has been extended to include the New Orleans metro area as Tropical Storm Isaac makes its way toward the Florida Keys.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Sunday morning that the watch area now stretches from east of Morgan City, La., to the Florida Panhandle.
Forecasters have said that Isaac could be a dangerous Category 2 hurricane by the time it makes landfall over the northern Gulf Coast. That is expected to happen sometime late Tuesday or early Wednesday.
The outer bands of Isaac have already started lashing South Florida and the Florida Keys. Tropical storm-force winds extend up to 205 miles from the storm's center.
Isaac currently has top sustained winds of 65 mph.
In New Orleans, city and state officials are closely monitoring the progress of Tropical Storm Isaac as it moves across the Caribbean, and will continue to post updates at http://ready.nola.gov and http://www.gohsep.la.gov/.
Officials are encouraging all citizens to get themselves and their families prepared for a storm at any point during hurricane season by making and reviewing their emergency plan, having up-to-date emergency kits, and knowing how they would evacuate if need be. Citizens can also sign up for emergency alerts from the City of New Orleans, which provide immediate information to citizens via text, call, or email.