Taking stock of Tropical Storm Cindy

The American Press

While it didn’t cause any major structural damage, it’s still nice to say goodbye to Tropical Storm Cindy.

The storm made landfall last week, producing 2 to 6 inches of rain and maximum sustained winds of 50 mph. High tides measured 1 to 3 feet above normal.  

The rainfall, combined with above-average high tides, caused flooding on some roads and in low-lying areas around Calcasieu and Cameron parishes. But that’s nothing new for some residents, who live in areas that flood even during regular thunderstorms.

Cindy also caused widespread power outages. Entergy reported 9,700 customers without power statewide. About 1,000 customers in our region were without power Thursday. Some residents likely didn’t view Cindy as much of a threat. Instead they saw it as merely a thunderstorm that lasted longer than usual. 

But Cindy should serve as a reminder for residents to have a plan ready in case a stronger storm comes our way.

It’s impossible to know how active a hurricane season will be from one year to the next. But it only takes one devastating storm to severely affect an area.

Luckily for us, Cindy didn’t reach hurricane strength before landfall. It was downgraded to a tropical depression by midmorning Thursday.

We’re less than one month into this year’s Atlantic hurricane season. Weather Channel meteorologist Jim Cantore, in town for the storm, said “the heart of the season” isn’t until August or September. 

Those of us who lived here in September 2005 remember how destructive Hurricane Rita was, along with the severe flooding from Hurricane Ike three years later.

While Tropical Storm Cindy has come and gone, we shouldn’t let our guard down. Hopefully, no major storm will strike our area, but preparing ahead of time is the better than waiting until the last minute.

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