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It's getting crowded out there

As of 11:00 a.m. EST, Gustav was still a tropical storm, but it'll be a hurricane again (if it isn't already). This one's got weather watchers edgy, as it's already responsible for over 20 deaths and, if it keeps going like it is, it'll hit New Orleans as a major hurricane (category 3 or higher), which has yet to recover from Hurricane Katrina in 2005. I was living in Montgomery, Alabama when that one hit; while it didn't do the damage to us that Ivan had done the year before (we lost power for 12 hours on that one), Katrina is on record as the costliest and one of the five deadliest storms to hit the U.S. These days, I'm living in Northern Virginia, where direct hits from tropical storms or hurricanes is rare (though we do get some of the effects--the remnants of Fay just wafted through yesterday).

But Gustav isn't the only one out there. Hannah (below) just got her name today, and she's expected to reach hurricane status on Sunday. She could reach the U.S. shortly after Gustav, though exactly where is not as certain. If Florida is in her sites, that region's already saturated from Fay and Hannah could wreak havoc.

And that's still not all. Long range forecast models are calling for the development of three or four more storms in the next couple of weeks. Boy, howdy. To all the folks in the Caribbean and along the Gulf Coast and southeastern seaboard, keep safe. Prayers and blessings to you all.