The National Weather Service has announced that Tropical Storm Debby’s threat to the Louisiana coast decreased Sunday as news emerged that the storm had claimed at least one life in Florida.
According to the NWS, Debby could bring bring five to 10 inches of rain to the northwest coast of Florida. That brings a threat of flash floods inland to go along with the 1- to 3-foot storm surges Debby is expected to churn up.
“The combination of a storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters,” the weather service cautioned in a Sunday morning briefing.
As of a 8am EST update Monday, the National Hurricane Center reported that Debby’s top winds are 50 miles (80 kilometers) per hour, down from 60 mph earlier, as the storm sat about 90 miles south- southwest of Apalachicola, Florida.
Earlier, in Florida, a woman was killed and a child was injured when a tornado spawned by Debby hit Venus, in the center of the state. Emergency crews there reported “severe property damage” but they were still assessing the scene. The storm also caused chaos in Alabama, where rescue crews plan to continue searching for a South Carolina man who disappeared in rough surf caused by Debby.
While Tropical Storm Debby’s projected path has moved away from Louisiana and toward northwestern Florida, experts say the storm’s exact track is still difficult to pinpoint.
The NHC’s current forecast calls for a possible Panhandle landfall on June 29 with drenching rains, coastal flooding and isolated tornadoes.
“People are going to hate Debby in a couple of days,” said News 9 meteorologist Brian McClure. “They’re going to really hate this tropical storm.”
MSNBC has more on Tropical Storm Debby’s projected path in the video below: