Hurricane Isaac is crawling along at 10 m.p.h., and winds hit 75 m.p.h. as Isaac gained strength moving over the warm, open waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricane Isaac is forecast to reach New Orleans early Wednesday morning.
Isaac is forecast to become a category 1 hurricane today, bringing 14 inches of rain and storm surges of up to 12 feet. Hurricane Isaac will be the first test of post-Katrina levee improvements in New Orleans.
Tropical Storm Isaac is predicted to become a Category 2 hurricane by Wednesday, but it is much weaker than Katrina's damaging category 5 status. Still states of emergency were in place throughout much of the Gulf Coast region Monday.
Forecasters expect that Isaac will be a hurricane by the time it makes landfall, likely on the Florida Panhandle late Tuesday or early Wednesday. The Republican National Convention, which opens in Tampa on Monday, is within the possible strike zone.
Though the media has focused on possible effects of the storm on the Republican National Convention planned to take place in Tampa beginning on Monday, others worry about flooding and damage elsewhere.