LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - As this year’s Hurricane Humberto continues to track off away from the U.S., the name Humberto brings back bad memories for some folks in Southwest Louisiana.
Back in 2007, a storm with the same name developed rapidly in the Northern Gulf and came ashore in Southeast Texas and moved into Southwest Louisiana.
“This thing really just popped up out of nowhere," one Southwest Louisiana resident said in 2007 about Hurricane Humberto.
“As you can see right now we had to shut it down early because we’re flooded inside up to our knees, and it’s just a bad day right now," said another, about having to close their store early for the day.
It was just 12 years ago Southwest Louisiana had little time to prepare for the storm.
“Humberto actually set the record for the fastest development of a tropical system prior to landfall. It actually went from a tropical depression to a hurricane in just over 12 hours. It made landfall as a category one hurricane around High Island, Texas which was about 50 miles from where Rita made landfall," meteorologist, Ben Terry, said.
While this year’s Humberto and the 2007 storm that brought flooding to our area share a name, the storms have a few differences.
“It’s been on the map a lot longer and the folks that have been in its path have had a lot more time to prepare. Thankfully, it looks like this storm will stay out to sea and pose no threat other than just some high surf along the Carolina coastline and the east coast over the next couple of days," Terry said.
While we’ve been lucky to avoid widespread, major impacts from a hurricane so far this season, it doesn’t mean our area is in the clear.
“A hurricane like Humberto that goes from 0 to category 1 in one day, you can’t prepare for that, you have to be ready when it hits," Dick Gremillion, director of the Calcasieu Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, said.
“We don’t currently have a storm that’s threatening the gulf or threatening Southwest Louisiana, that doesn’t mean we’re going to make it all the way through the rest of the season with that risk being 0. That’s why you gotta stay prepared. Like we saw with Humberto in 2007, sometimes it can give you a short amount of time to be prepared or get prepared," Terry said.