Hurricane Ike rolled off the coast of northwest Cuba today, heading toward the United States. The storm will intensify as it moves across the Gulf of Mexico but will most likely not become a record setting tropical cyclone with respect to wind intensity. It will, however, present a serious threat to life and property from Lake Charles, Louisiana to near Brownsville, Texas. As the eye of the hurricane comes ashore, the area from Victoria, Texas to 60 miles northeast of Victoria appear at this time to be most at risk from a large storm surge, high winds and tornadoes.
As we all know, the behavior of these storms can be quite erratic so never accept a forecast at any given time as the gospel as to what is going to happen. For example there is a region of high pressure across the southeast and southern sections of the United States. If the high pressure ridge becomes a little stronger, the hurricane could be shoved more to the south and west. If is weakens a little, the hurricane could turn to the north sooner.
Based on current data, tropical cyclone Ike "may" affect Oklahoma with heavy rains Saturday and Sunday. If it does it will join forces with a cool front that will have already brought the threat of heavy rains Thursday and Friday. So a fascinating five days of weather is shaping up. Stay tuned.