Gordon Heads North, Cleanup Begins Along Gulf Coast

Clark Diaz
September 7, 2018

Hurricane Gordon, now downgraded to a tropical storm, has struck the United States, hitting the Gulf Coast with heavy rain and strong winds.

Hurricane Florence has strengthened into a major Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds at 130 miles per hour with higher gusts as of 5 p.m.

A tropical storm warning is in effect from southeastern Louisiana to the Okaloosa-Walton County line in Florida.

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Gordon will bring strong winds as well as sporadic tornadoes to the Alabama and Florida coasts as well as heavy rainfall with the potential for flash flooding across the western Florida Panhandle, southwest Alabama, southern and central MS, northeastern Louisiana and southern Arkansas.

Gordon was expected to produce total rain accumulations of 10 to 20 centimetres over the western Florida Panhandle, southwest Alabama, southern and central MS, northeastern Louisiana and southern Arkansas, the agency said.

One child was also reported dead in Florida's Escambia County, after a tree fell on the family's mobile home.

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The centre predicted total rain amounts of 10 to 20 centimetres in the Florida panhandle and parts of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa and IL. The name and age of the child were not released. "What can you do", she said.

The first major hurricane of the Atlantic season will affect Bermuda's surf by Friday, but it was too early to say whether it would hit land. S.J. who attends Walker Elementary School, and Destiny, a senior at Crestview High School, said they were happy to have the day off from school.

Driftwood and other debris made for hazardous driving early Wednesday on the causeway to Dauphin Island, Alabama, which was partly flooded by seawater overnight, leaving people to drive over sand and around lawn furniture on the main road. As much as 20 centimetres of rain could fall in some parts of the Gulf states through late on Thursday as the tropical weather moves inland toward Arkansas. "We haven't really gotten a lot of reports on that though thank goodness, considering what the last few weeks have been like", he said. Models are suggesting this wave will turn more to the north in the central Atlantic, in between two ridges of high pressure. "Now is the time to get your plans all set", he said.

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Energy companies and port operators along the Gulf Coast took steps to resume normal operations after Gordon shut 9 per cent of the region's oil and natural gas production. "Sometimes it starts pushing not only water across but debris, logs and things of that nature, which makes it very treacherous to get across", said Jeff Collier, mayor of Dauphin Island, Alabama.

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