Equinor shutting in US Gulf platform, Shell evacuating workers due to Cristobal


Because of its system of protective levees and flood walls, known as the Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction System, storm surge flooding was not expected in New Orleans.

As of 11 a.m. Saturday, Cristobal (pronounced krees-TOE-bahl) has top sustained winds of 50 mph, with its center of circulation located about 345 miles south of the mouth of the Mississippi River.

"On the forecast track, the center of Cristobal will approach the northern Gulf of Mexico coast this afternoon, then move inland across Louisiana late today through Monday morning, and northward across Arkansas and Missouri Monday afternoon into Tuesday".

Those rain bands combined with afternoon heating could set off storms far inland.

Life-threatening storm surge is also possible along the Florida Big Bend, in portions of southeastern Louisiana and along the MS coast within the next 48 hours, according to forecasters.

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Rain pounded the U.S. Gulf Coast on Sunday ahead of the arrival of Tropical Storm Cristobal, which has already spawned a tornado in Florida and threatened more twisters along with high winds and storm surge. Radar this morning is showing a large swath of rain now falling from southern Louisiana to southeast Georgia. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Weather Prediction Center predicts a significant amount of rainfall from June 4 to 11 in the Gulf states and Lower Mississippi River. This will cause some very localized flooding. There is also the possibility of brief tornadoes Sunday night and into Monday morning. The remnants of Cristobal will move north across the Mississippi River Valley and start to impact Wisconsin on Tuesday. Forecasters expect portions of Mexico and Central America might see an additional one to 12 inches of rain Friday and Saturday, with isolated areas possibly seeing up to 25 inches.

Cristobal is too weak and is moving too quickly to have big impacts on the oil platforms in the area.

Offshore platforms account for 16 per cent of US crude oil production and 2.4 per cent of natural gas output, according to the Energy Department. Overnight we will see the lower 70's to the upper 60's.

Hurricane season peaks from late August through early October.