Hot on the heels of Fred, the arrival of two more tropical storms — Grace and Henri — is making for an intense Atlantic hurricane season.
Computer models suggest that Tropical Storm Henri could make landfall on the U.S. mainland sometime on Sunday or Monday, though exactly where remains unclear.
“The biggest point here is that it’s still too soon to know exactly how close Henri’s center will get to the coast of New England,” the National Hurricane Center said Thursday.
Henri, which had maximum sustained winds of 65 miles per hour as of 5 p.m. ET on Thursday, was moving northward from its location between Bermuda and the coast of South Carolina, and was forecast to reach hurricane strength by early Saturday morning.
The NHC forecasts that most of the eastern U.S. coast will experience dangerous surf and rip currents, which have claimed more than 100 lives every year, according to the National Weather Service.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Fred continued to dump rain on portions of New England and Maine on Thursday, and flash flood warnings remained in effect for much of western Maine. The storm could still bring an additional 1 to 3 inches of rain to parts of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, and it continues to pack maximum winds of 30 miles per hour.
One of the campgrounds in Cruso (Haywood County) where people are still missing. This is Laurel Bank Campground where a lot of seniors had campers as summer retreats. @foxcarolinanews pic.twitter.com/X768gawx8g
— Cody Alcorn (@CodyAlcorn) August 19, 2021
Fred first landed in Florida as a tropical storm last week, before heading inland and being felt most acutely in North Carolina. In Haywood County, N.C., 20 people were missing as of Thursday and two people were confirmed dead. More than 200 rescuers set out on Thursday to find the other missing residents. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper toured flood-damaged areas and declared a state of emergency on Wednesday.
“This state of emergency will allow our first responders to get into our affected communities quickly to save lives, restore power, remove debris and bring supplies,” he said in a statement. “North Carolina is strong and resilient, and we’re committed to helping people and businesses recover as quickly as possible.”
A collapsed rock retaining wall near Church Street in Canton has closed both directions of U.S. 19/23 in Haywood County. pic.twitter.com/nXXOWRTUwJ
— NCDOT Western Mts (@NCDOT_Westmtn) August 17, 2021
The strongest of the three active storms, Grace, was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm with maximum sustained winds of 50 miles per hour after making landfall in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula on Wednesday.
It’s expected to regain hurricane strength in the Gulf of Mexico before making a second landfall along central Mexico’s eastern coastline late Friday, according to the NHC.
Before reaching Mexico, Grace drenched parts of Haiti, which was already reeling over the devastating 7.2 magnitude earthquake that caused widespread damage and killed more than 2,000 people.
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