The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

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August 28, 2012

Tropical storm Isaac could bring rain to the Joplin area on Friday

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — UPDATED,11:22 a.m.: According to The Weather Channel, Isaac has reached hurricane status.

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Tropical storm Isaac could affect the Ozarks on Friday, but meteorologists with the National Weather Service forecast office in Springfield are uncertain about what might happen.

The latest forecast calls for the arrival of the storm at approximately 1 p.m. Friday, producing rains of 1 to 3 inches and isolated severe weather. Winds gusts could reach 30 to 40 mph.

It is possible the eastern Ozarks could receive significantly more moisture than other parts of the state, depending on the track of the storm.

The forecast office said there is still a great deal of uncertainty about the track of the storm inland and how intense it will be.

The office said it is unlikely the storm will produce enough moisture to put a dent on the ongoing drought. Reflecting the rainfall deficit across the region, the office estimates that at least 12 to 15 inches of rain would be needed to impact the drought. The rain, however, could bring short-term relief to the area.  

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami predicts Isaac will balloon up to hurricane strength, which starts at winds of 74 mph, later today and be at least a Category 1 hurricane by the time it reaches the coast of Louisiana.

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