The first signs of Hurricane Gustav can be seen by our Live Doppler 9 Network as we look at the New Orleans Radar site this evening. Notice the heavy outer rainbands already beginning to move ashore. These rainbands are extending far out from the center of circulation, showing you how broad this storm actually is. Right now, the center of Gustav is sitting approximately 230 miles to the southeast of New Orleans.
Gustav has been moving off to the northwest at 18 to 20 mph. Based on that current speed and its distance from the coastline, that puts Gustav making landfall about 12 hours from now, or sometime late Monday morning.
We expect Gustav to then slow its forward speed down considerably when he moves onshore on Monday afternoon. As he slows down, he will more than likely take a left turn, or turn towards the west. These our the different computer models projecting where Gustav will go. Notice how most of them, in some shape or form, bring Gustav into East Texas. This could be problematic for us. As you well know, any tropical system that stalls or moves at a very slow clip will bring heavy amounts of rainfall. At this point, the general consensus takes Gustav into Shelby county, which includes the towns and communities of Center and Timpson. In addition to the heavy rain threat, tropical storm force winds, greater than 40 mph, will be felt in areas that are close to the circulation as well.
We'll see in the later updates if these computer models continue to remain where they are at the present time. Stay tuned.