Hurricane Laura is 2020’s latest blow to humanity and, as of this writing, it hasn’t even made landfall yet. Currently classified as a Category 4 storm (but with Category 5 potential), it’s set to make landfall near the border of Louisiana and Texas Wednesday night and into Thursday morning. The Weather Channel advises residents of those areas to prepare for a major strike. Some sources are even blunter about the destruction en route. Even a local New Orleans news meteorologist was just barely able to hold it together while delivering a dire warning to viewers during a live shot.
WDSU Chief Meteorologist Margaret Orr chokes back tears reading a dire warning from the National Hurricane Center, saying the message reminds her of Hurricane Katrina. Please take this storm seriously. pic.twitter.com/HKZlNH1inO
— wdsu (@wdsu) August 26, 2020
Margaret Orr, Chief Meteorologist at WDSU-TV, found herself having to interrupt her colleagues on the air after receiving still more alarming news. The message came from the National Hurricane Center, and before she read it aloud, Orr’s introduction didn’t exactly inspire confidence. “It truly reminds me shades of Katrina,” Orr said, looking back at the devastating 2005 hurricane that destroyed large swaths of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast
The message Orr relayed was made public by the National Hurricane Center’s Twitter account.
Unsurvivable storm surge with large and destructive waves will cause catastrophic damage from Sea Rim State Park, Texas, to Intracoastal City, Louisiana, including Calcasieu and Sabine Lakes. This surge could penetrate up to 30 miles inland from the immediate coastline. #Laura pic.twitter.com/bV4jzT3Chd
— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) August 26, 2020
“Unsurvivable storm surge with large and destructive waves will cause catastrophic damage from Sea Rim State Park, Texas, to Intracoastal City, Louisiana, including Calcasieu and Sabine Lakes,” the message read. “This surge could penetrate up to 30 miles inland from the immediate coastline.”
After reading the words — among them “unsurvivable storm surge” — aloud on-air, Orr simply took a deep breath and told viewers, “That’s all I have to say,” then walked off.
As per the Associated Press, Hurricane Laura grew in size by nearly 70% in just 24 hours, with winds currently estimated to go as high as 145 mph. AP estimates that the storm is “capable of sinking entire communities,” and authorities have issued mandatory evacuation orders in places that are expected to be directly hit.
Even well before the hurricane was expected to hit, harrowing footage has been appearing on social media.
— Bloomberg QuickTake (@QuickTake) August 26, 2020
— Reed Timmer (@ReedTimmerAccu) August 26, 2020
Hurricane #Laura is expected to bring 9+ feet of storm surge to parts of #Louisiana and #Texas. If you're told to evacuate, you need to do so before it's too late. #HurricaneLaura pic.twitter.com/OoFcSeRWY9
— CStore News. Noticias de CStore (@CStoreNews_) August 25, 2020
— GregNordstrom (@GregNordstrom) August 26, 2020
— Nicholas Isabella (@NycStormChaser) August 26, 2020
Stay safe, everyone.