... Dense fog advisory remains in effect until 9 am CST Monday...
* visibility... one quarter mile or less.
* Duration... areas of fog tonight through mid morning.
* Impacts... reduced visibilities on area roadways including both interstates 10 and 12 and bridges over waterways.
A dense fog advisory means visibilities will frequently be reduced to less than one quarter mile. If driving... slow down... use your headlights... and leave plenty of distance ahead of you.
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 7:29 am CST on March 2, 2015
... Severe weather awareness week in Louisiana... ... March 1 through March 7 2015
The week of March 1 through March 7 has been designated as severe weather awareness week in Louisiana. Late winter and Spring months typically bring the highest frequency of severe weather to Gulf Coast region. Severe weather awareness week is good time to review severe weather safety plans and ensure you have a means to receive timely warnings.
The topic today is severe thunderstorms and associated hazards and safety information...
By definition... a thunderstorm is classified as severe if it produces hail 1 inch in diameter or larger and/or wind gusts 58 mph or stronger.
Downward rushing currents of air... called downdrafts... occur along the leading edge of thunderstorms. Very strong downdrafts are often called downbursts. Wind gusts in severe thunderstorms can reach 60 mph... and can sometimes approach 100 mph. The strong thunderstorm wind gusts can produce a roaring sound... often mistaken for a tornado. These strong wind gusts associated with severe thunderstorms can damage or destroy Mobile homes... .down trees and power lines... and damage poorly constructed buildings.
Large hail can also occur in severe thunderstorms. Hailstones are precipitation in the form of lumps of ice that form during some thunderstorms. Hailstones are usually round and range from pea size to the size of a grapefruit. Hail is most devastating to crops but can also cause heavy damage to automobiles... roofs... and aircraft.
While large hail is uncommon in south Louisiana or south Mississippi... .it can occasionally occur.
On may 14.. 2008... large hail fell in wide swath from southern Pointe Coupee Parish across Baton Rouge into Livingston Parish. Considerable damage occurred to house roofs and automobiles from both of these events. In February 2013... large hail... up to the size of Golf balls fell across the West Bank areas of the New Orleans area resulting in property damage.
Hailstones generally form in thunderstorms between the currents of rising air... the updraft... and the current of air descending toward the ground... the downdraft. Large hailstones indicate strong updrafts in storms. The larger the hail the stronger the updraft needed to hold it aloft in the thunderstorm. It is for this reason that in storms that produce tornadoes... the hail often falls directly to the northeast or east of the path of a tornado. The strong updraft is associated with the part of the storm that can produce a tornado.
If a severe thunderstorm approaches with the threat of damaging winds and large... seek shelter in an interior on the lowest floor of a well constructed building away from doors or windows. An interior small room such as a bathroom or closet..or even a hallway away from doors and windows is the best location.
On Wednesday morning around 915am ... the National Weather Service will issue a test Tornado Warning message on the NOAA Weather Radio system to allow organizations to test and review their severe weather plans and ensure their NOAA weather radios are working properly. The test message will be clearly worded as a test. Many NOAA Weather Radio may not sound an audio alarm... however they will display test on their screen signifying they successfully received the test. If severe weather or hazardous weather is expected on Wednesday the test message will be rescheduled to a later date.
For further information contact the New Orleans / Baton Rouge area National Weather Service forecast office... 985-649-0357 extension 4.
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