JACKSON, Miss. (AP) -- Tropical Storm Lee has formed in the Gulf
The governor of Mississippi has declared a state of emergency in
seven counties because of the storm.
Gov. Haley Barbour says residents should not underestimate it.
He says it's expected to cause tremendous flooding.
A state of emergency frees up resources that can be used to
prepare for a storm.
Around midday Friday, the center of the Lee was nearly
stationary off the Louisiana coast with top sustained winds of 40
mph. Its center was expected to make landfall in Louisiana over the
Tropical Storm Lee has cut off just under half of the normal oil production from the Gulf of Mexico's U.S. waters.
That's the word from the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy
Management, Regulation and Enforcement.
The agency said Friday that 169 of the 617 manned production
platforms in the Gulf have been evacuated, along with 16 of the 62
drilling rigs now operating in the Gulf.
The evacuations have resulted in the shut-off of 47.6 percent of
the Gulf's daily normal oil production and 33 percent of the normal
daily natural gas production.
That translates to about 666,000 barrels of oil and 1.7 billion cubic feet of gas.