By Jim Stefkovich, Meteorologist, Alabama Emergency Management Agency
CLANTON –Wednesday, 5 pm September 16, 2020
Sally has produced a lot of tree and structural damage in south Alabama and especially near the coast, where 30-35 inches of rain has fallen. The good news is that the heavy rain and high winds have ended near the coast.
At 4 pm, Sally has become a Tropical Storm with sustained winds of 60 mph and is forecast to weaken to a Depression with 35 mph sustained winds shortly after midnight tonight as the center passes near Troy. The remnants of Sally will move into western GA around 8 am Thursday.
The threats of heavy rain and wind gusts near or over 40 mph will continue for areas east of I65 and south of I85 until the early morning hours of Thursday, ending statewide by 4 am. In addition, the tornado threat through tonight is confined to areas east of an Auburn – Troy – Geneva line.
An additional 4-8 inches of rain is still possible east of I65 and south of I85 through early Thursday morning, with some spots potentially approaching 12 inches. This could produce significant and life-threatening flash flooding, and you should avoid driving tonight if at all possible in this area. It is very difficult to tell the depth of the water, plus the gusty winds could down trees across roads.
Scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms are possible on Thursday, but this should not contribute to additional flooding issues. That said, a number of rivers and creeks between Montgomery, Dothan and Mobile will remain in Moderate or Major Flood until at least Saturday and many homes and businesses will be flooded in this region.
Very little if any rainfall is expected Friday through Sunday, with cool temperatures.