Fred leaves hundreds of Florida Pandhandle residents with out energy
- There could also be watery rains in the mid-Atlantic states.
- Texas could be a destination for Grace on the Gulf Coast.
- Some tornadoes were possible from Tropical Storm Fred in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.
Tropical storm Fred brought heavy rains over the southeastern United States early Tuesday, while earthquake-damaged Haiti tumbled under a drenching of Grace, a depression that regained tropical storm status overnight. However, a new storm was expected to widen into a tropical storm on Tuesday, targeting Haiti and Texas before penetrating the Gulf of Mexico.
Fred’s maximum sustained winds had weakened after landfall and were now 40 mph, the National Hurricane Center said. The weather service had lifted all guards and warnings around the storm by late Monday.
No deaths have been reported from Fred, although thousands of Florida Panhandle residents were reported without power in the hours after landing late Monday. Emergency teams in the panhandle repaired fallen power lines and cleared fallen trees in Fred’s aftermath.
Fred was one of three storms that swirled in the Atlantic Basin. Behind Fred were Tropical Storm Grace, which gained strength early Tuesday after drenching the Dominican Republic and earthquake-hit Haiti on Monday, and Tropical Storm Henri, which formed near Bermuda on Monday afternoon. Henri became the eighth named storm of the Atlantic season.
The National Hurricane Center announced that a tropical storm watch was in effect for Bermuda.
President Joe Biden declared a state of emergency in Florida when Fred threatened floods, tornadoes and noxious winds. A state of emergency authorizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency to support local and state emergency response.
Fred has a crush on Florida, Alabama
Lifeguards hoisted double red flags along Panama City Beach in Florida’s Panhandle, warning beachgoers not to enter the Gulf of Mexico. The area was preparing for rain and some wind from the storm, and although evacuations were not ordered, schools and government offices were closed on Monday.
“We sure got it a lot worse, but that’s no reason to be complacent,” said Florida Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford. “The fewer people there are, the better. We expect heavy rain from this storm. “
Salt water washed over roads and caused flooding in low-lying areas of Dauphin Island, a coastal barrier south of Mobile, Alabama, Monday Mayor Jeff Collier.
Later Monday, some tornadoes were possible in parts of the Florida Panhandle, southwest Georgia and southeast Alabama, the hurricane center said.
Fred’s soaking rain could sweep as far as the mid-Atlantic states
Parts of the south could see up to 4-8 inches of rain with isolated maximum storm totals of 12 inches, the hurricane center warned on Monday. Southeast Alabama through western and northern Georgia and the western Carolinas could be soaked in 4-7 inches of rain with isolated maximum storm totals of 10 inches.
As of Wednesday, parts of Virginia and other mid-Atlantic states were forecast to have 2 to 4 inches of rain with isolated maximum storm totals of 6 inches while Fred is interacting with a nearby front, the center said.
The heavy rains could lead to flooding from lightning, urban, small creeks and isolated rivers, the center said. Landslides were possible along the Blue Ridge Mountains on Tuesday.
Fred’s center is due to dissolve by Wednesday morning, the National Weather Service said.
“Life-threatening” Fred: Tropical storm approaches Florida
“Life-threatening” storm surge possible
The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the high tide causes normally dry areas near the coast of the Panhandle to be flooded by rising water moving inland from the coast, the hurricane center warned. Storm surges can reach up to 5 feet in some areas.
“There is a risk of life-threatening flooding from rising water moving inland,” the center said.
Tropical storm Grace devastates Haiti
Grace lashed earthquake-damaged Haiti as a tropical depression on Monday, draining up to 10 inches of rain before regaining tropical storm status early Tuesday. The heavy rains shot at people who huddled in the fields looking for survivors.
The storm could not have come at a worse time for Haitians as they grapple with the effects of Saturday’s 7.2 magnitude earthquake, which was blamed for more than an estimated 1,300 deaths.
Forecasters said Grace was moving near or over Haiti’s Tiburon Peninsula early Tuesday on a forecast route that is expected to run between southeast Cuba and Jamaica by Tuesday afternoon. It had sustained peak winds of 35 mph and was headed west at close to 14 mph.
Texas could be Grace’s US target
Grace is slated to show up in the Gulf of Mexico this week, and the U.S. Gulf Coast could be a destination. AccuWeather forecasters said they are monitoring atmospheric conditions and how they might affect where Grace will track through the weekend. These factors include the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, as well as winds at different levels in the atmosphere.
“Unless any other southern weather system throws Grace off course, the tropical system could target Texas,” said AccuWeather.
The far southern part of Texas remained on Grace’s potential prediction path, but the storm seemed more likely to hit Mexico, according to the hurricane center’s latest forecast released Monday morning. Grace has been forecast to reach a minimum hurricane force of 74 mph before hitting land, the hurricane center said.
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Tropical storm Henri develops near Bermuda
Tropical Storm Henri had maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour and was approximately 140 miles southeast of Bermuda on Monday night.
The storm was expected to make a “slow turn clockwise west” over the next few days, forecasters said in an expert report. The center of the depression should move southeast and south of the island territory.
Although the storm began at the beginning of development, forecasters did not expect Henri to reach the US coast.
Contributors: Elinor Aspegren, USA TODAY; The Associated Press