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Hurricane Laura to bring 'catastrophic' damage to Texas-Louisiana coast as a Cat. 4

GALVESTON, Texas (Reuters) - Hurricane Laura was expected to cause catastrophic damage and “unsurvivable storm surge” to the Gulf Coast near the Texas and Louisiana border after strengthening on Wednesday to a Category 4 storm, the National Hurricane Center said.

Hurricane Laura approaches the coasts of Texas and Louisiana in an image from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Laura, located 200 miles (320 km) south-southeast of Port Arthur, Texas, on Wednesday afternoon, had maximum sustained winds of 140 miles per hour (220 km per hour) and was expected to pack winds of up to 145 mph (233 kph) before landfall on Wednesday night, the Miami-based forecaster said.


Some 620,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders in Louisiana and Texas.


The catastrophic storm surge could penetrate up to 30 miles (48 km) inland from the coastline between Sea Rim State Park, Texas, and Intracoastal City, Louisiana and could raise water levels as high as 20 feet (6 m) in parts of Cameron Parish, Louisiana, the NHC said.


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