The Hurricane Watch Net (HWN) is closely monitoring tropical storm Nate, which is expected to become a Category 1 hurricane by the time it reaches the Gulf of Mexico. The system is currently about 230 miles south-southeast of Cozumel, Mexico, maintaining maximum sustained winds of 45 MPH and moving to the north-northwest at 14 MPH — a marked increase in forward velocity.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has posted a hurricane watch from Morgan City, Louisiana, to the Mississippi/Alabama border; metropolitan New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain, and Lake Maurepas, and from Punta Herrero to Rio Lagartos, Mexico. Offshore oil-drilling platforms in the Gulf are being evacuated. The storm will move into the southern Gulf of Mexico tonight and approach the northern Gulf Coast on Saturday evening, the NHC said.
“As a result, the Hurricane Watch Net is now at Alert Level 3 — Standby Mode,” HWN Manager Bobby Graves, KB5HAV, said. “As of now, we are looking at a possible net activation at 1800 UTC on Saturday.”