New Storms Trail Sally in Record-Setting Hurricane Season
By David E. Hubler
Contributor, EDM Digest
In a hurricane season that is currently on a record pace, Hurricane Sally is just a harbinger of things to come. Behind Sally is a series of storms lining up in the Caribbean and Atlantic oceans heading west toward the U.S. mainland.
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“Sally blasted into the southeastern United States on Wednesday, unleashing massive floodwaters and powerful winds along the coast from the Florida Panhandle to Mobile, Ala., that swallowed up roadways and left hundreds of thousands without electricity,” according to the Washington Post.
The National Weather Service said “historic and catastrophic flooding unfolded from west of Tallahassee to Mobile Bay in Alabama as seawater charged ashore and rivers jumped their banks.”
Sally Downgraded to a Tropical Depression
By Thursday, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) downgraded Sally to a tropical depression. “But Sally was taking its time moving out of Alabama on Thursday morning, leaving widespread damage and flooding in its wake,” reported AL.com, an Alabama news site.
But trailing Sally are Teddy and Vicky. The NHC has issued advisories on Hurricane Teddy, located over the central tropical Atlantic, and Tropical Storm Vicky, located over the eastern tropical Atlantic.
As of 5 a.m. Atlantic time AST (9 a.m. UTC) Thursday, Teddy had maximum sustained winds of 105 mph (165 km/h) and was moving northwest at 12 mph (19 km/h). “Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles (55 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 255 miles (405 km),” the NHC advisory said.
Teddy to Become a Major Hurricane as Vicki Weakens
As Teddy strengthens over the open Atlantic, it is expected to become a major hurricane by Thursday night or Friday, the NHC added.
Vicky is not expected to reach hurricane status. At 5 a.m. AST (0900 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Vicky was moving toward the west-northwest about 7 mph (11 km/h). “A turn to the west is forecast later today, followed by a west-southwest motion on Friday,” the NHC said. Vicki, with maximum sustained winds of near 40 mph (65 km/h) and higher gusts, isexpected to weaken further and become a tropical depression later Thursday.
They may not mark the end of hurricane season because a NWS satellite photo of Africa shows six new disturbances crossing the continent, “most of which will form into storms when reaching the Atlantic.”
At least seven tropical systems were whirling across the Atlantic on Monday morning, notes Matthew Cappucci of the Weather Gang.“The jam-packed Atlantic marks the climatological peak of hurricane season, which typically arrives around early to mid-September.”
For only the second time on record, Cappucci said, “at least five tropical cyclones (Rene, Paulette, Sally, Teddy and Vicky) roamed the Atlantic simultaneously Monday. The last time this occurred was in September 1971, when there were six.”