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Why didn’t Baton Rouge see same impact Arabi did? ‘None of the storms took advantage of the atmosphere.’


BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – Here in our neck of the woods, a lot of people probably thought Tuesday’s weather was just a big bust.

Some people posted on social media with captions like, “What storm hit our area.”

Clearly, we dodged a bullet compared to our friends down in the New Orleans area, specifically in Arabi.

Videos show the massive and rare multi-vortex tornado that ripped through St. Bernard and Orleans Parishes at EF-3 strength, according to initial surveys from the National Weather Service.

That tornado destroyed almost everything in its long path.

“Right here, where I picked it up coming on land, around Cocodrie, that’s 80 miles that that same singular thunderstorm held together, and it started to become tornado right down here,” said WAFB Chief Meteorologist Jay Grymes.

But on Wednesday, many people probably were thinking why our area did not see those same impacts.

“The good thing for the Baton Rouge and the WAFB area, is as that line slid through our area, none of the storms took advantage of the atmosphere,” said Grymes.

Thankfully, the storm turning into pretty much of a dud for our area.

“Fact of the matter is, we can’t predict what thunderstorm, is going to go from a strong thunderstorm to a tornadic storm. What we did know more than a day in advance, was across all of South Louisiana, the ingredients were there,” said Grymes.

Jay says it’s always necessary to alert folks to potential severe weather, but never to alarm people. So people can get prepared just in case.

“The science isn’t there for us to tell people hours or days in advance, who’s going to get the rough stuff and who’s not going to get it. What we do know though, is when the conditions are set up and primed to allow for severe storms to form,” said Grymes.

A final assessment by the National Weather Service on that massive tornado is expected to be completed on Thursday.

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