With only 24 hours away from the third anniversary of the Hurricane Katrina disaster, New Orleans is watching the Gulf for another storm; Gustav. As of now, the projected track will take it just to the west of New Orleans near Houma, LA which would not be good for the Crescent City. This potential track will mean that New Orleans will get hit with the "dirty side" of the storm, where the worst winds and rains reside. In addition, the storm surge is bad on this side as well, and with Katrina, we know what a storm surge can do to a city that is at some points 6 to 20 feet below sea level.
In what I call the Katrina affect, the local news stations are already providing some major coverage of Gustav's possible tracks. Starting yesterday, the Meteorologists have been hosting 3 daily live chats online by video giving viewers the opportunity to ask questions about the storm and its possible impact. I think that if the Democratic National Convention was not going on right now, this would be a big national story. It may become one as the days go on. The storm is projected to hit the Gulf Coast sometime on Tuesday or Wednesday next week. Governor Jindal of Louisiana has already declared a State of Emergency and WWL-TV has reported that Gov. Jindal may start contra-flow evacuations Saturday if the storm keeps its current track towards the Louisiana coastline.
It will be interesting to see what sort of hype will follow this storm as it gets closer to the United States. As of now, the system has been pretty fickle, so there is no telling what will happen. There is another storm in the Atlantic, Tropical Storm Hannah and two other storms, one off of the coast of Africa and another one behind Hannah that have some favor of developing into storms.
It seems that this season will be a little busier than last season. We will hope for the best and pray that we will not have another disaster like Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, or Wilma of 2005.