Tropical Storm Ida heads toward U.S.

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A tropical storm warning is in effect from Grand Isle, La. eastward to the Aucilla River in Florida, in advance of Tropical Storm Ida, the National Hurricane Center reports.

The warning area includes New Orleans and Lake Pontchartrain.

Ida, which was a Category One hurricane, weakened to a tropical storm this morning. The storm, with sustained winds near 70 miles per hour, is centered about 185 miles south-southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River and about 285 miles south-southeast of Pensacola, Fla.

Ida is moving north-northeast at nearly 17 miles per hour, and a turn toward the north and then the north-northeast is expected during the next 24 hours. The storm is expected to make landfall Tuesday morning.

The National Hurricane Center warns that tropical force winds from Ida extend outward up to 200 miles.

Ida is the ninth named storm of the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season, which ends Nov. 30.

Click here for an article on Coast Guard preparations in advance of Ida.

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