Delta enters the Gulf, hurricane and tropical storm watches go up for La.

Tracking Delta: Wednesday 4 p.m. track update

(WVUE) - Hurricane Delta is officially in the Gulf of Mexico and will likely strengthen back to a Cat. 3 before moving inland midday Friday west of New Orleans.

Winds are at 100 mph due to land interaction. Expect it to regain strength over the warm waters of the Gulf over the next 24 hours.

Residents in the New Orleans area should hope it weakens before landfall with cooler water temps and shear.

A Storm Surge Watch has been issued for the northern Gulf coast from High Island, Texas, to the Alabama/Florida border including Calcasieu Lake, Vermilion Bay, Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, Lake Borgne and Mobile Bay.

A Hurricane Watch has been issued for the northern Gulf coast from High Island, Texas, eastward to Grand Isle, Louisiana.

A Tropical Storm Watch has been issued along the Texas coast from west of High Island to San Luis Pass. A Tropical Storm Watch has also been issued along the northern Gulf coast from east of Grand Isle, Louisiana, to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, including the city of New Orleans, Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas.

While it is too soon to be specific with impacts for the FOX 8 Viewing Area, most of the state will feel some effects. Storm surge will impact coastal areas, bands of heavy rain could set up, and strong winds could spell power outages for portions of the area. The extent of these impacts will be determined by the track and intensity.

The weather looks good today and Thursday to make preparations for the storm. The worst weather will be on Friday and early Saturday. Stay with FOX 8 for more updates throughout the week.

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