North Alabama stayed largely quiet Tuesday. We have experienced only minimal impacts from Sally thus far: mainly cloud cover and a slight breeze. Along the Gulf Coast, south Alabama is bracing for 4 to 6 feet of storm surge, hurricane force wind, and most importantly, the likelihood of life-threatening, historical flooding due to upwards of 20 inches of rain.
Sally moves onshore Wednesday. The center of circulation will stay well to our south as the remnants of the storm continue their trek inland. In North Alabama, the wind will be picking up Wednesday and it will be breezy off and on through Friday. Expect the clouds to hang tough and the rain to roll in through Wednesday during the second half of the day. With a track that stays farther southeast, our anticipated rainfall totals have been pared down a bit from what was initially expected. Marshall and DeKalb Counties will still face the brunt of the rain, but only as much as 2 to 3 inches of rain are expected. Out toward the Shoals, most spots will see less than half an inch.
The wind shouldn’t be a major issue in North Alabama as gusts are expected to stay below 30 mph. Any stronger storms can take down weak trees in saturated soil, but that’s likely not a widespread concern. Flooding is possible too, where the rain is persistent and falling heavily and quickly – a threat that’s mainly focused closer to Sand Mountain.
As mentioned earlier, it stays breezy in North Alabama through Friday. That’s due in part to the remnants of Sally, but also because of a cold front heading our way. That front passes Friday, bringing drier, cooler air just in time for the weekend. All in all, it also means it will be feeling like fall just in time for the autumnal equinox on Tuesday, September 22. Not only will lows dip to the mid to upper 50s, but we’ll also have highs in the upper 70s next week!