Hurricane Sally dumped ‘4 months of rain in four hours’ in Florida and Alabama on Wednesday, weakening to a tropical depression but still threatening torrential rain and flooding over at least the next 2 days.
Tropical storm Sally to bring flooding threat to Southeast
Hurricane Sally has downgraded to a tropical storm but the threat of torrential flooding is far from over. Despite a decrease in strength, heavy rainfall from the hovering storm means that flooding remains a major potential hazard.
On Thursday, Tropical Storm Sally will move through the states of Alabama and Georgia. From there, the storm is expected to move into South Carolina in the evening in overnight hours, and then into North Carolina and Virginia.
Flood threat ahead
Forecasters warn that portions of southeastern Alabama and central Georgia could see anywhere from 4 to 12 inches of rain, as well as significant flash flooding. As the storm moves into South Carolina, areas there are expected to seep between 4 to 10 inches of rain.
Isolated areas, from western to central North Carolina, as well as southeastern Virginia, may see up to 8 inches of rain.
NWS flood alerts for the southeast
The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a number of flood-related alerts for the Southeastern US on Thursday.
Flood warning: southeastern Alabama; Florida panhandle; southwestern Georgia.
Flash flood warning: northern and central Georgia.
Flash flood watch: northern and central Georgia; western, central and northwestern South Carolina; western, central, eastern and northeastern North Carolina; eastern Virginia; southern Maryland.
Sally dumped “4 months of rain in 4 hours,” officials said
The slow-moving hurricane made landfall at the Alabama-Florida panhandle border, near Gulf Shores, Alabama on Wednesday and hovered, flooding the area with torrential amounts of rain. Pensacola saw over 30 inches of rain, CNN reported. Parts of Florida saw “four months of rain and four hours,” officials said.
On Wednesday, crews near the Florida-Alabama border rescued at least 377 people. At least one person died in Alabama.
Floodwaters from the storm swallowed up homes, downed trees, and power lines, and turned streets into rivers.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said “pretty much any body of water in northwest Florida” has the potential to see levels rise over the next few days because of heavy rainfall delivered by Tropical Storm Sally.
Over half a million without power
As of early Thursday morning, according to poweroutage.us, over half a million in the Southeast were without power, including:
The numbers are expected to rise in parts of Alabama and Georgia throughout the day as the storm moves through the area, and later into South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.
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