Friday, September 23

Still dangerous

Hurricane Rita has weakened to a Category 3 storm but will still cause a dangerous storm surge and powerful winds in Southwest Louisiana within hours, according to the latest advisory from the National Weather Service.

Hurricane force winds could last 10-12 hours in Calcasieu and Cameron parishes and “catastrophic river flooding” is expected along the lower Calcasieu and Sabine rivers, the advisory warned.

The Calcasieu River at Sam Houston Jones State Park could crest at 16.5 feet, which would be the highest level ever recorded, the weather service said. River levels at the Salt Water Barrier and Old Town Bay could break records as well.

Hurricane force winds could last 4-6 hours in Jeff Davis and Vermillion parishes.

Jeremy Harper

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