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Author Topic: Hurricane Laura  (Read 2077 times)

Ryctor2018

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Hurricane Laura
« on: August 26, 2020, 02:53:48 PM »

(Mods please move if not in proper forum). I'm in the Midwest, a long way from the Gulf Coast. Pray for all in the path of this probable monster hurricane. From a road geek perspective, I wondered what effects this storm would have on the Interstates, highways, byways and infrastructure in the storm path. What major routes would be closed? How does contraflow work for I-10/I-49? Assuming the best, how long would it take to reopen the main routes? Not thinking about the worst (since it has not happen as of this post) how would people move around after the hurricane pass. Thanks for taking my questions!
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2020, 04:46:01 PM »

I've been looking at the forecasts, it's really scary, they expect a widespread 10 - 15 ft storm surge from the Bolivar Peninsula to Morgan City, and even a 15 - 20 ft surge around Calcasieu Lake.

The flooding is forecasted to stretch over 30 miles inland, up to near I-10 and north of I-10 along certain river basins like the Sabine and Calcasieu Rivers. Cameron Parish is likely to be entirely flooded. They call it 'not survivable'.







The coast itself has only limited road infrastructure. Texas State Highway 87 to the Bolivar Peninsula seems like a vulnerable road, it's almost directly at the coast line and had problems with erosion in the past. Similarly, LA 82 is also directly on the coast line in certain areas, which could be under 20 foot of water.

There are not a lot of bridges immediately on the coast line though, Sabine Lake Causeway Bridge may be the most vulnerable bridge crossing in the worst impacted area. I wonder if the seawall around Port Arthur will be high enough, the forecast is a 15 foot surge in Sabine Lake.

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2020, 09:34:58 PM »

Iíve not seen anything about contraflow on any of the interstates in Louisiana. Most evacuations are coming from Lake Charles and I think most people took I-10 away from there or US 171 to the north.

Lafayette area or Morgan City further south surprisingly had less of storm surge or flooding threat so I doubt there are many evacuations from there. I-49 has WAY less traffic than other interstates so it wonít get overloaded at all.


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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2020, 09:40:15 PM »

It looks like I'm in the path, according to NOAA.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2020, 09:40:43 PM »

Yes, this is a potential catastophic storm coming in, and the impacts will be cataclysmic for Calcasieu and Cameron Parishes and Orange and Jefferson County in Texas to begin with. But, the aftereffects will be just as severe.

The combination of the 15 - 20 foot storm surge, the 8 - 12 inches of rain, and the hurricane force wind flow will push Gulf of Mexico water all the way up to and past Interstate 10, perhaps as high as 5 - 10 feet in the area between Lake Charles and the Texas state line, effectively shutting it down for days.

The city of Lake Charles will get the "pleasure" of experiencing 120+ mph winds along with a storm surge that may reach 9' above MSL, essentially drowning the city the way the levee breaks drowned the Ninth Ward of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.

There is also a distinct threat that debris from Calcasieu Lake could severely damage the I-10 bridge across the Calcasieu River, which is already on the edge of insufficiency.

Evacuations should have already been completed by now, but I'd say the main routes would be I-10 east to US 165 north through Alexandria, or further east through Lafayette and Baton Rouge. There's also US 171 north to Shreveport, but considering that Laura is moving generally in that direction and will have sustained hurricane force winds long past landfall, NE or E would be a better direction of escape.

I'm viewing all this from Opelousas, where we're expected to be right on the eastern fringe of all Hell breaking loose further west. We'll get our share of wind and rain and maybe some tornadoes, but nowhere near what SWLA and the Golden Triangle (Beaumont-Port Arthur-Orange) will be getting.

Adding my own prayers and support to those in the path.

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2020, 10:15:15 PM »

I'm pretty worried the initially conservative weather forecasts for Hurricane Laura have left a lot of residents sitting in place choosing to ride out the storm.

Only a couple days ago forecasters were saying Laura would make landfall as a strong category 1 hurricane or maybe a weak cat-2 storm. None of the national outfits saw this hurricane flaring into a strong category 4 monster with the potential to even make category 5 by landfall.

Lake Charles will likely be horribly devastated by this storm. A greater percentage of this small city may see homes and businesses damaged beyond repair than what Katrina did to New Orleans. I just pray there isn't a proportionately high number of deaths to go with it. Hopefully everyone that needed to leave did so.

The entire town of Cameron along with various homes and small businesses along LA-82 could be completely erased off their foundations. Those coastal areas will get hit with storm surge nearly as bad as what Hurricane Camille unleashed on Gulfport and Pass Christian in 1969.

Quote from: Anthony_JK
There is also a distinct threat that debris from Calcasieu Lake could severely damage the I-10 bridge across the Calcasieu River, which is already on the edge of insufficiency.

That was one of my first thoughts once it looked like Lake Charles would likely get hit directly by a hurricane of historic strength. The I-10 Calcasieu River bridge is one old, rickety, obsolete bridge very long overdue for replacement. Damage from this hurricane could put that bridge permanently out of service, forcing I-10 thru traffic onto I-210 until a replacement can be built.

It looks likely multiple portions of I-10 could be badly damaged by this hurricane.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2020, 10:31:06 PM »

I'm communicating with a friend in New Iberia, south of Lafayette. He hasn't evacuated.
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Ryctor2018

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2020, 11:36:20 PM »

Crazy! The news is stating that some places could be literally wiped off the map! Pray that everyone got out! The midwest had that Dericho that hit Iowa, southern MN, WI, IL, northern IN, and MI. That was 80+ mph winds that lasted only an hour. I can't even fathom 150+ mph winds (nearly 190+mph gusts) rolling over a city.
I suppose the National Guard/LaDOT can create some temporary routes thru passible areas. For long distance Interstate travel, I suppose I-10 and maybe even I-20 will be off limits for a few weeks until the roads are repaired.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2020, 12:15:29 AM »

I knew it was going to blow up, I've been watching the sea surface temperatures on earth.nullschool.net and the water in that portion of the Gulf is 87 degrees-that's almost bath water heat. Marco weakened because the portion of the Gulf it was going through was only 83-84 degrees, which would leach off a lot of that energy. Winds are holding at 150 MPH per the last NOAA advisory.

From 15 mins ago, NOAA Update statement:

Hurricane Laura Tropical Cyclone Update
NWS National Hurricane Center Miami FL       AL132020
1100 PM CDT Wed Aug 26 2020

...EYEWALL OF LAURA NEARING COAST OF LOUISIANA...
...CATASTROPHIC STORM SURGE, EXTREME WINDS, AND FLASH FLOODING
EXPECTED TONIGHT AND EARLY THURSDAY...

A Weatherflow site at Cameron, Louisiana recently reported a
sustained wind of 41 mph (66 km/h) with a gust to 67 mph (108 km/h).

Calcasieu Pass recently reported a sustained wind of 49 mph (80
km/h) with a gust to 70 mph (113 km/h).

SUMMARY OF 1100 PM CDT...0400 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...29.2N 93.2W
ABOUT 60 MI...95 KM S OF LAKE CHARLES LOUISIANA
ABOUT 65 MI...105 KM SE OF PORT ARTHUR TEXAS
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...150 MPH...240 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...NNW OR 340 DEGREES AT 15 MPH...24 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...938 MB...27.70 INCHES

Batten down the hatches for real, chillun.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2020, 09:11:13 AM »

Most of the Lake Charles area cameras on LADOTD's 511 page are unavailable (https://www.511la.org/). The friend in New Iberia says he's fine right now (very windy, some siding torn off), but storm surge might come later.
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cjk374

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2020, 09:29:24 AM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2020, 11:12:19 AM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Historically, hurricane warnings were issued only for the coast, and certain inland bodies of water, such as Lake Okeechobee.  Those warnings were, and still are, issued by the National Hurricane Center.  Inland areas were put under severe thunderstorm warnings or high wind warnings as needed by the local NWS offices.  Years ago (about 20 years), NWS offices started issuing tropical warnings.  I think it was called something like an inland hurricane force wind warning (or tropical storm force).  This made more sense.  Since it's predictable farther in the future than thunderstorms, affects larger areas, and often lasts longer, it makes sense to give that kind of system its own warning.  The use of actual hurricane warnings inland is a recent development, I think in the past 10 years or so.  Still, this system is extraordinary.  It's probably the strongest hurricane in history to landfall in Louisiana.  (Camille affected Louisiana but made landfall in Mississippi.)  Texas and Louisiana have never had a category 5 hurricane, probably because of the extensive continental shelf and large area of shallow water.  So this may be the farthest hurricane force winds have ever made it into Louisiana.

Another newer product is the extreme wind warning.  It's issued where hurricane force winds at category 3 or higher (115 mph or higher sustained winds) are expected inland.  "Severe thunderstorm" doesn't quite cover that.  Sometimes they would use a tornado warning to convey the degree of danger, even though it's technically inaccurate.  The new warning is more precise.  I saw one in effect for Louisiana last night.
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ethanhopkin14

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2020, 12:58:18 PM »

I'm pretty worried the initially conservative weather forecasts for Hurricane Laura have left a lot of residents sitting in place choosing to ride out the storm.

Only a couple days ago forecasters were saying Laura would make landfall as a strong category 1 hurricane or maybe a weak cat-2 storm. None of the national outfits saw this hurricane flaring into a strong category 4 monster with the potential to even make category 5 by landfall.

Lake Charles will likely be horribly devastated by this storm. A greater percentage of this small city may see homes and businesses damaged beyond repair than what Katrina did to New Orleans. I just pray there isn't a proportionately high number of deaths to go with it. Hopefully everyone that needed to leave did so.

The entire town of Cameron along with various homes and small businesses along LA-82 could be completely erased off their foundations. Those coastal areas will get hit with storm surge nearly as bad as what Hurricane Camille unleashed on Gulfport and Pass Christian in 1969.

Quote from: Anthony_JK
There is also a distinct threat that debris from Calcasieu Lake could severely damage the I-10 bridge across the Calcasieu River, which is already on the edge of insufficiency.

That was one of my first thoughts once it looked like Lake Charles would likely get hit directly by a hurricane of historic strength. The I-10 Calcasieu River bridge is one old, rickety, obsolete bridge very long overdue for replacement. Damage from this hurricane could put that bridge permanently out of service, forcing I-10 thru traffic onto I-210 until a replacement can be built.

It looks likely multiple portions of I-10 could be badly damaged by this hurricane.

It happened. Reports are that the Isle of Capri riverboat casino broke lose of its moors and got lodged under the bridge. There are varying accounts of the damage to the bridge.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2020, 01:25:45 PM »

Another newer product is the extreme wind warning.  It's issued where hurricane force winds at category 3 or higher (115 mph or higher sustained winds) are expected inland.  "Severe thunderstorm" doesn't quite cover that.  Sometimes they would use a tornado warning to convey the degree of danger, even though it's technically inaccurate.  The new warning is more precise.  I saw one in effect for Louisiana last night.

Contrary to a lot of developments the NWS has made in recent years (winter storm alert "simplification", potential elimination of advisories, etc), I actually like the extreme wind warning. The concept of a warning for eyewall winds alone has been around since 2004, when Hurricane Charley and Jeanne made landfall on Florida at major intensity. For those storms the NWS in Melbourne issued special alerts for the landfalling eyewall, but as tornado warnings. The same thing was introduced across the NWS for the 2005 season, including for Dennis, Katrina, Rita, and Wilma.

Unfortunately, using tornado warnings to convey this information is not all that helpful during a landfalling hurricane since those often produce tornadoes of their own in the outer bands (for example, the NWS in Lake Charles issued 30 tornado warnings yesterday). The extreme wind warning was finally introduced as a separate product in 2007, but it wouldn't be used until Hurricane Matthew's near-miss of the Florida east coast in 2016. To date, only 11 extreme wind warnings have been issued: one for Matthew, one for Harvey, four for Irma, one for Maria, one for Michael, and four for Laura.

debragga

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #14 on: August 28, 2020, 10:49:35 PM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Hey there neighbor, do you have power over there? My apartment in Monroe still doesn't have it back up yet. Greater Ouachita Water Company was having issues too and had to shut down, but they came back up today.
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cjk374

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #15 on: August 30, 2020, 12:27:53 AM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Hey there neighbor, do you have power over there? My apartment in Monroe still doesn't have it back up yet. Greater Ouachita Water Company was having issues too and had to shut down, but they came back up today.

Everyone has their power back except me and a couple others who have individual powerline issues. I was given a possible return of power date of Sept. 2 at 10 p.m.!!!

This is not good...but I know our fellow Louisianians down south have it much worse than we do.
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debragga

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #16 on: August 30, 2020, 10:28:44 PM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Hey there neighbor, do you have power over there? My apartment in Monroe still doesn't have it back up yet. Greater Ouachita Water Company was having issues too and had to shut down, but they came back up today.

Everyone has their power back except me and a couple others who have individual powerline issues. I was given a possible return of power date of Sept. 2 at 10 p.m.!!!

This is not good...but I know our fellow Louisianians down south have it much worse than we do.

You must have Entergy too. At 10:42 this morning they told me mine would be done by 9/2 at 10pm as well. At 11:11am my power was restored.

And I agree, it's a lot worse down south.
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cjk374

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2020, 05:22:20 AM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Hey there neighbor, do you have power over there? My apartment in Monroe still doesn't have it back up yet. Greater Ouachita Water Company was having issues too and had to shut down, but they came back up today.

Everyone has their power back except me and a couple others who have individual powerline issues. I was given a possible return of power date of Sept. 2 at 10 p.m.!!!

This is not good...but I know our fellow Louisianians down south have it much worse than we do.

You must have Entergy too. At 10:42 this morning they told me mine would be done by 9/2 at 10pm as well. At 11:11am my power was restored.

And I agree, it's a lot worse down south.

I drove to Marshall, TX yesterday and bought a generator. While I was there, I met 2 guys from Lake Charles who were there to buy generators to take back home to family & friends. Lowes in Marshall had a 2 generator purchase limit. They had 2 9000+ watts units in the back, and 18 pallets of 5500 watt units. One of the guys thought I wanted a big unit and was willing to do rock-paper-scissors for them. I told them I didn't want one that big.

So now I am running 2 ACs and one refrigerator in my new generator. Still waiting for Entergy.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2020, 07:05:24 PM »

This morning at 8:20 a.m., way up here in Lincoln Parish (look for Ruston on a map), we are under a hurricane warning. I have lived here all of my life and have never heard of an actual hurricane warning being issued this far north!

We've got some wind, some heavy rain, and it is nasty outside. There is no way I would want to be on the coast going through the crap they went through 7 hours ago.

I have been on the Louisiana coast in Cameron Parish just a few months ago. I saw a few home made of SOLID concrete (sans windows) & built high up on concrete pillars. I'm sure they had "hurricane proof" in mind when built. I do wonder how those homes have fared & if the residents stayed or evacuated.

My ass would have been long gone if I resided on the coast.

Hey there neighbor, do you have power over there? My apartment in Monroe still doesn't have it back up yet. Greater Ouachita Water Company was having issues too and had to shut down, but they came back up today.

Everyone has their power back except me and a couple others who have individual powerline issues. I was given a possible return of power date of Sept. 2 at 10 p.m.!!!

This is not good...but I know our fellow Louisianians down south have it much worse than we do.

You must have Entergy too. At 10:42 this morning they told me mine would be done by 9/2 at 10pm as well. At 11:11am my power was restored.

And I agree, it's a lot worse down south.

I drove to Marshall, TX yesterday and bought a generator. While I was there, I met 2 guys from Lake Charles who were there to buy generators to take back home to family & friends. Lowes in Marshall had a 2 generator purchase limit. They had 2 9000+ watts units in the back, and 18 pallets of 5500 watt units. One of the guys thought I wanted a big unit and was willing to do rock-paper-scissors for them. I told them I didn't want one that big.

So now I am running 2 ACs and one refrigerator in my new generator. Still waiting for Entergy.
Iím surprised Ruston area still doesnít have power but i heard it was bad. Iím near Alexandria and still waiting, too.


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cjk374

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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2020, 05:37:59 AM »

I saw some pictures from Alexandra. Cat-2 hurricanes are nothing to toy with at all!

I'm still waiting on Entergy.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #20 on: September 15, 2020, 10:20:08 PM »

The DOTD is now investigating "a hole" at the I-10 Calcasieu bridge.

I have a bad feeling about that bridge; it's old and has been through a lot. Oh, and getting with a casino barge can't help either.
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Re: Hurricane Laura
« Reply #21 on: September 16, 2020, 12:11:54 AM »

The DOTD is now investigating "a hole" at the I-10 Calcasieu bridge.

I have a bad feeling about that bridge; it's old and has been through a lot. Oh, and getting with a casino barge can't help either.

Yeah if I have to drive through Lake Charles on I-10 anytime soon I'm taking 210 instead. How convenient that it exists.
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