Friday update – Isaac and W. Michigan WeatherAugust 30th, 2012 at 5:49 am by Bill Steffen under Bill's Blog, Weather
As you can see some very significant flooding going on in LA and MS. (click the pics. to enlarge). Up to 20″ of rain has already fallen. So far, 2 fatalities. There were also 2 injuries with an Isaac-related tornado at Crandall, Mississippi. With the storm not moving much, you can see the “training” of heavy rain as the bands set up over the same area. One levee has been topped, but most levees and the N.Orleans pumps are still holding fine. Nearly 2,000 people have been rescued – many of those were in mandatory evacuation areas, but refused to leave (very frustrating). The Louisiana state and city government seemed to be more ready for this hurricane than Katrina and as I write this. 14 Billion was spent on levee repair. 93% of Gulf oil production has been shut down by Isaac. Isaac is now a Tropical Depression. It’s drifting slowly northward and it’s slow movement will continue to bring heavy rains (see links in thread below). The National Guard has been called out in SE Louisiana, where at least 12 have been arrested for looting. Approximately 700,000 customers have been without power. That includes nearly half of the state of Louisiana and another 150,000 in Mississippi. There were a handful of relatively small tornadoes spun off by the storm in S. Mississippi and S. Alabama. Isaac also left heavy rain (up to 10″) in Florida.
Here in Michigan, we stay dry…upper 80s to low 90s tomorrow. What’s left of Isaac could still produces a few showers/isolated t-showers in extreme S. Michigan (south of I-94), but don’t hold your breath. It looks like the rain will pretty much stay down in Illinois and Indiana. The NAM (Caribou) model is dry Saturday for G.R. and Kalamazoo. The European has us dry over the weekend with a weak front stalling out and giving us a chance of a thundershowers on Monday. It only gives G.R. 0.01″. There’s an Air Quality Alert for the lakeshore counties and Kent Co. for Friday, though it’s iffy whether we can reach the Air Quality Threshold with a west wind.
Gayle and I went to Gun Lake to kayak Weds. and the wind was calm much of the time we were there…nice day, we had a picnic – watched several deer come back through the water from an island east of the State Park peninsula and saw the full moon come up in the east. At Lake Michigan there’s a moderate chance of pier/breakwater currents. Grand Rapids is 0.3 degree cooler than average so far this month and we’re starting with a low at least down at 57 this Thurs. AM (average high/low is 79/59), so despite two warm days, we may not be able to make that up. Sept. 2011 was the last month that was cooler than average in G.R. The average wind speed in G.R. this month has been only 6.3 mph. The average wind speed for Weds. was 3.1 mph and we had 100% sunshine. We’ve now had 9 days with an average wind of less than 4 mph. Here’s more coverage of Isaac from WWLTV, WGNO, WSDU, and NOLA. Tropical Storm Leslie will be named soon – it should become a hurricane but stay east of the U.S.