Re: Predictions are useful
"this was anticipated but the interesting thing is that Laura stayed at hurricane strength much further inland than any hurricane has done for years now - a swath of Louisiana will not get power or water until the end of the month if we're lucky. That was not predicted"
Wrong. That was predicted. See Advisory 24, among others, here: https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2020/LAURA_graphics.php?product=5day_cone_with_line
It is also common for major hurricanes to stay hurricane strength well ashore when moving as quickly as Laura. Major hurricanes making US landfall is what is not common, but when they do, they stay hurricanes for awhile. Camille in 1969 made it almost to Tennessee as a hurricane after coming ashore at the Alabama coast as a Cat 5.