Seawater could spill onshore as high as 3 to 5 feet, spelling significant trouble for roads and towns along the coast. In this zone, the water could rise up 3 to 5 feet above normally dry land at the coast.
Tropical storm-force winds battered south Florida and the upper Keys on Monday as Gordon formed.
New Orleans director of emergency preparedness Collin Arnold says the storm has the potential to turn into a "low-level hurricane" with potential winds of up to 70 miles per hour (113 kph).
Tropical Storm Gordon continues to maintain its strength as its winds are sustained at 60 miles per hour as it moves into the Gulf of Mexico.
Schools in parts of coastal Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and MS were closed Tuesday, and others announced they would open for only part of their normal day.
Gordon is expected to dispense 4 to 8 inches of rain over a large swath of the north central Gulf Coast as well as areas farther inland, through central MS and southern Arkansas.
A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of conditions that make outside preparations hard or risky. Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency Monday and said 200 National Guard troops will be deployed to southeastern Louisiana.More news: Chicago Bears: 10 bold predictions following Khalil Mack trade
However authorities issued a voluntary evacuation order for residents outside the levee protection system, including the Venetian Isles, Lake Saint Catherine and Irish Bayou areas. Storm surge warnings have been issued there, as well. City Hall and government offices will close Tuesday for nonessential employees. Another seven floodgates and the Caernarvon Sector Gate were set to be closed Tuesday. Levee overtopping and breaches at these locations in 2005 led to devastating flooding from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans' Lower 9th Ward, the city's eastern swath and in St. Bernard Parish.
At this time, the FPA does not anticipate that the three pump stations at Lake Pontchartrain will be activated, but it is prepared to do so if the forecast changes and water levels reach key thresholds, according to the press release. A Flash Flood Watch is in effect.
"We're a beach coffee shop, and if people can't go to the beach, then we won't get any customers". "There's no reason to be alarmed". Jake Wilson told WEAR-TV that the strong wind was bringing a lateral current "where it's just going to push you down the beach". "We expect our citizens to be doing the same".
The storm is expected to cross from southwest Florida into the Gulf Coast later Monday afternoon.
Hurricane warnings are now in effect until further notice for coastal MS and tropical storm warnings remain in effect for the rest of the viewing area.
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect from Shell Beach, Louisiana, to the Mississippi-Alabama border.
A Tropical Storm Gordon Twitter account even cropped up on Monday, personifying the terror so many people felt.