Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards provided an update on the state’s storm preparedness as Hurricane Laura makes its way further into the Gulf of Mexico.
Watch the governor’s remarks in the player above.
Hurricane Laura strengthened Wednesday into “an extremely dangerous Category 4 hurricane,” The National Hurricane Center said.
Laura is expected to strike Wednesday night into Thursday morning along the Louisiana-Texas border. Forecasters warn of “catastrophic storm surge, extreme winds and flash flooding” and 20 feet (6 meters) of storm surge.
Tropical storm winds Wednesday afternoon reached the coast of Louisiana where water levels started to rise. An observing site at Eugene Island measured sustained winds of 39 mph (63 kph) and a gust of 64 mph (104 kph).
Laura’s well-formed eye was 200 miles (320 kilometers) south southeast of Lake Charles, Louisiana and Port Arthur, Texas, early Wednesday afternoon.
Laura is predicted to reach at least 145 mph (233 kph) winds, but may weaken ever so slightly before landfall.