JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The facts and figures on Hurricane Isaac are already staggering, and the storm still has a long way to go before moving out of Louisiana and weakening. In fact, Isaac should remain in Louisiana through Thursday evening. It will continue to move slowly over the next 24-36 hours, increasing the flood threat for the Lower Mississippi River Valley.
Over 75% of the city of New Orleans lost power on Wednesday and over 500,000 customers in the state of Louisiana were without power.
Storm surge heights of 6 to 8 feet are still occurring along portions of the coast of Southeastern Louisiana and Mississippi.
Hurricane Isaac is expected to weaken to a tropical storm Wednesday afternoon or evening...and become a tropical depression by Thursday night. By Friday night, it should be "post-tropical", a remnant low spreading rain into parts of the Midwest.
Air Force Reserve and NOAA Hurricane Hunters flew a total of 34 missions into Isaac...which gave us 95 fixes on the storm's center of circulation.
Wind gusts have topped out near 100 mph and rainfall amounts are approaching 1 foot in some areas already. These are comparable with Hurricane Katrina during the same time frame. Remember, Katrina made landfall east of New Orleans. Isaac came in just south of The Big Easy, putting the city directly in harm's way.