Fay Sits on Florida, Brings Heavy Rainfall

August 20, 2008

As of 8 a.m. the National Weather Service said Tropical Storm Fay was centered near Cape Canaveral and headed slowly in a northerly direction.

A tropical storm warning remains in effect from north of Jupiter Inlet, Florida, northward to Altamaha Sound, Georgia.

A hurricane watch remains in effect from north of Flagler Beach, Florida to Altamaha Sound, Georgia.

A tropical storm watch is in effect from north of Altamah Sound to the Savannah River, according to NWS.

Fay is traveling north at 5 mph and forecasters say the motion is expected to continue throughout the day (Aug. 20). A gradual turn toward the northwest is forecast during the next 12 to 24 hours and Fay is expected to remain near or over the east-central and northeastern Florida coast through Aug. 21.

Data from a reconnaissance plane and surface observations indicate that Fay’s maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 45 mph with higher gusts. The winds are occurring mostly over water, to the east of Fay’s center, NWS reported.

Gradual restrengthening is possible during the next 24 hours before fay moves back inland over northeastern Florida on Thursday.

Rainfall accumulations of 5 to 10 inches are expected over east-central and northeastern parts of Florida, with maximum total amounts up to 15 inches possible.

Isolated tornadoes are possible in portions of northeastern Florida and storm tides could reach 1 to 3 feet above normal along Florida’s east coast.

Emergency Management officials are warning residents to remain vigilant.

“Residents along the First Coast, North Florida and Big Bend regions
should pay close attention to the future movement of Tropical Storm Fay and be prepared to act, “said Florida Emergency Management Director Craig Fugate. “Fay may be with us well into the weekend as it heads back across the state.”

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) continues to operate at a Level 1, or full activation mode. Residents throughout Florida should continue to monitor official forecasts and special statements from the National Weather Service, Fugate said.

State and federal officials will begin joint damage assessments in South Florida today in Martin and Monroe Counties. State officials will also be in all of the counties affected by Tropical Storm Fay to determine the extent of damages and the need for further assistance.

Sources: National Weather Service
Florida Division of Emergency Management

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