MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Hurricane Sally is expected to come on shore near Mobile, Alabama sometime Wednesday morning likely as a strong category 1.
The storm is crawling toward the coast and has slowed to a measly two mph. This slow movement will mean persistent rain and a very high likelihood of flash flooding along the coast and beyond.
The track will remain far enough southeast that it won’t bring many impacts to the Mid-South. We could see an occasional downpour or extra clouds but nothing significant and most will remain dry.
It will be a different scene for residents along the Gulf Coast and inland sections from Mississippi, Alabama, to Georgia, and rain will spread as far north as the Carolina’s and southern Virginia. This system will dump a lot of rain on these areas.
Rainfall amounts of 7-10″ and this be on the low end as some models are forecasting up to 15+ inches for the immediate coast and central to southern sections of Alabama.
In addition to the rain, the wind will likely be a major issue. One model above is showing wind gusts up to 90 mph in Mobile, Alabama early Wednesday morning. Winds looks to be the strongest from Biloxi, Mississippi to Tallahassee, Florida. These strong winds will cause water to rise and pile up and this is what we refer to as storm surge.
Storm surge is the rise in sea level during a storm. It is a measurement of how high the water is expected to be above what the normal predicted astronomical tide height.
Storm Surge along the coast could anywhere from 6-9 and possibly up around or exceeding 11 ft. Tornadoes are also a possibility as Sally slowly moves onshore.
After all that is going on with Sally, its hard to even think about other tropical systems but there are three others and an area that could develop soon.
The good news at this point, is none pose an immediate threat to land at least in the short-term. We definitely need to watch TS Teddy. This is the system that is the farthest south. Hopefully the upper level pattern will keep it at sea.
What a season so far and we still have to go through all of October and November before the season officially ends.
This Hurricane season has already broken or tied records but no big surprise as there have been so many firsts in 2020. This is only the 2nd time, that the Atlantic season has had a "V" named storm. The first v named storm was in 2005 which had the most storms on record at 28 named storms. Another 2nd for this season is that there were 5 named storms in the Atlantic at once. The first time that there were 5 at a time on record was the 1971 Hurricane Season. In addition, this season broke records before it officially began by having 2 named storms prior to the official start of hurricane season.
We are at 20 named storms and only one more name to go (Wilford) before storms will get named from the Greek Alphabet. This season will likely rank in the top 5 most active seasons on record.