10 a.m. Friday Update: The latest full advisory on Tropical Storm Barry has increased wind speeds to 65 miles per hour. Infrared satellite also shows thunderstorms developing rapidly on the south side of the storm. It is again expected to make landfall as a category 1 hurricane in south-central Louisiana Saturday morning.
The forecast track has changed very little, if anything it has moved slightly east and away from the ArkLaTex, but we remain in the area of potential uncertainty.
The slower movement could push back the anticipated impacts in the ArkLaTex slightly, with the main impacts still expected to be late Saturday through Sunday. We may still see the chance for Tropical Storm force winds south of I-20, but winds will come down during the day Sunday as Barry weakens into a Tropical Depression.
The corridor of heaviest rain remains expected to fall east of the ArkLaTex, but there is still time for the path to change so make sure you keep up with any updates. It’s still reasonable to expect 2 to 4 inches of rain of across much of Louisiana and Arkansas, especially across our far eastern counties and parishes.
7 a.m. Friday Update: The intermediate advisory on T.S. Barry shows a small pressure drop, an indication that the storm is showing at least some signs of intensification. It’s still dealing with a lot of shear and dry air on its north side. The next full advisory will be issued at 10 a.m., it will include a new forecast path.
4 a.m. Friday Update: The National Hurricane Center 4 a.m. advisory on Tropical Storm Barry isn’t great news for the ArkLaTex, as the track has shifted west once again. This will put us closer to the inner bands if this happens, and we could still be looking at heavy rain across Louisiana and Arkansas this weekend into early next week.
Our in-house forecast model has a good handle on the feast or famine rainfall amounts. We are still expecting lighter totals across most of east Texas and Oklahoma, but across northwest Louisiana and southern Arkansas we could see 2 to 5 inch accumulations through early next week, with isolated spots over 6 inches perhaps across Columbia/Nevada counties in Arkansas, and across our parishes east of I-49 in Louisiana. Rain will be heaviest late Saturday and into the day Sunday.
Wind will increase throughout the day Saturday if this current forecast track holds, and we may see some Tropical Storm force winds south of I-20 Saturday night into Sunday morning. I still feel like the forecast models don’t have a good handle on this system, so we may see additional changes in the forecast track. An intermediate advisory will come out at 7 a.m. central, followed by a full advisory update and any changes to the track at 10 a.m.
10 pm Thursday Update: Tropical Storm Barry continues to slowly strengthen as it slowly moves to the west. The National Hurricane Center indicates that Barry is now moving towards the west at 3 mph. Maximum sustained winds have increased to 50 mph.
Barry is forecast to strengthen to become a strong Tropical Storm or Category 1 hurricane just as it makes landfall late Friday night into Saturday morning. The latest forecast track still indicates that it will move through Northeast Louisiana to the east of the ArkLaTex. A few forecast models have shifted a little to the west in their latest runs. That means that we could still see some adjustment to the forecast track as we get closer to the weekend.
As of right now, it appears that we could see an inch or less over the western half of the area and two to as much as five inches over the eastern half. Stay Tuned.
7 pm Thursday Update: Tropical Storm Barry has strengthened a little during the past few hours. The 7 pm NHC update shows that Barry now has maximum sustained winds of 45 mph. That is up from the 40 mph observation with the last advisory.
Barry has also slowed down. The storm is now moving towards the west at 3 mph. Tune in for a live update on Tropical Storm Barry here at 8:30 pm.
4 pm Thursday Update: The National Hurricane Center has released the latest forecast for Tropical Storm Barry. The latest advisory doesn’t include much chance in the current strength of Barry nor do we see much change in the latest forecast track.
Since yesterday, models have been gradually shifting the projected path of Barry to the east. That eastward shift has ended. Forecast confidence is growing as most models have are more closely packed in their projections of somewhere near the Mississippi River. We still do have a few models including Futurecast that are forecasting a more westerly course. That means that ArkLaTex is still not out of the woods and some adjustments in Barry’s future forecast are still possible.
It still appears that most of Barry’s rain for the ArkLaTex will fall Saturday night and Sunday. Amounts will be heaviest over the eastern edge of the area where 3-5″ will be possible. The western half of the area will likely see amounts of one to three inches.
Wind gusts associated with Barry could exceed 20 mph Saturday night and Sunday over most of our area. We could see some gusts of over 30 mph from Natchitoches, Bienville, and Claiborne parishes.
1 pm Thursday Update: Tropical Storm Barry continues to slowly move west over the northern Gulf of Mexico. Most of the thunderstorms from Barry are separated from the center of its circulation. Surface pressures continue to slowly fall indicating that Barry should begin to strengthen. Most tropical models show the storm moving towards the north and staying to the east of our area. The Weather Predictions center indicates that the biggest threat for flash flooding will mainly be over south and southeastern Louisiana. They indicate that there is a ‘marginal’ risk for flash flooding for the eastern edge of our area meaning we could have a few isolated flooding issues develop. As of right now, we expect one to three inches of rain over the western half of the ArkLaTex and three to five inches over the east. Most of the rain will likely fall from Saturday night through Sunday. While models are starting to come together on the projected path of Barry, there is still a chance that the forecast could shift back to the west. Check back for continuous updates.
7 a.m. Thursday Update: The National Hurricane Center intermediate update on Potential Tropical Cyclone 2 shows winds are up to 35 mph. The next major advisory will be at 10 a.m. central, so we may have Tropical Depression Barry at that time, or later this afternoon. This will also be our next look at the updated NHC forecast track. Check back with this article for an update at that time.
4 a.m. Thursday Update: The National Hurricane Center official forecast track continues to push Potential Tropical Cycle Two (Barry) to the east. Please note the ArkLaTex remains in the area of uncertainty if there is a westward shift with later advisories.
We are not out of the woods yet, as a few forecast models including our in-house model show a westward trend. We will keep this article updated throughout the day.