USA – Tropical Storm Claudette Triggers Floods in Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama

Update, 21 June 2021:

As of 20 June, several storm-related fatalities were reported, including 12 people who died in a road accident in Butler County, Alabama reportedly caused by flood waters. One person died in flood water in DeKalb County, Alabama and 2 fatalities were caused by a falling tree in the Tuscaloosa area.

Original report, 20 June 2020:

Tropical Storm Claudette formed along the US Gulf Coast early 19 June, 2021 bringing heavy rains and some flooding to coastal areas of Mississippi and Louisiana. Flooding also affected parts of Alabama, where one person was reported missing.

The National Weather Service (NWS) New Orleans said 8 to 10 inches (203 mm to 254 mm) of rain fell across portions of the Northshore of Lake Pontchartrain and the Mississippi Coast, with some areas near Slidell seeing more than 10 inches.

Rainfall Louisiana Storm Claudette June 2021 – NWS New Orleans

Gulf Coast Flooding

Flooding was reported in coastal Mississippi, in particular in areas of in Jackson and Hancock counties. Reportedly residents were trapped in their homes due to flooding in Shoreline Park, Hancock County.

In Louisiana, severe flooding affected parts of St. Tammany Parish, mostly in Slidell where flood waters swamped city streets and damaged dozens of vehicles and some buildings.

Damage assessments in Slidell are ongoing. The Parish Government said, “St. Tammany Parish, specifically Slidell, received about 10-12 inches of rain overnight, per the National Weather Service. Saturday morning, Parish President Mike Cooper and other local elected officials visited the neighborhoods that sustained some of the most rainfall to assess damages.”

Floods in Slidell, Louisiana after heavy rain from Storm Claudette, June 2021. Photo: St. Tammany Fire Protection District 1

Floods in Alabama

Storm Claudette later moved inland, dumping heavy rainfall on parts of Alabama. Flooding was reported in Tuscaloosa metropolitan areas. Around 20 people were rescued by boat in Northport. Tuscaloosa County Emergency Management Agency said, “Considerable, life-threatening flash flooding is ongoing across parts of the Tuscaloosa. Folks, please avoid travel if at all possible. DO NOT drive into flood waters & move to higher ground if in a flood-prone or low-lying area!”

Meanwhile in Birmingham, local media citing Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service said a search was underway for a man who was possibly swept away by flooding. Levels of Village Creek in Ensley, a neighbourhood in Birmingham, jumped to highs of 14.22 feet (4.33 metres), where the record high is 14.8 feet (4.51 metres).

Village Creek AL at Avenue W in Ensley – NWS

Tornado in Escambia County, Alabama

In Escambia County, Alabama, the Emergency Management Agency (EMA) confirmed a tornado touched down in the East Brewton area at approximately 7:30 a.m. 19 June 2021. EMA confirmed three injuries as well as several damaged homes in the area.

Warnings for Coastal North Carolina

Storm Claudette weakened to a depression as of 20 June, but was expected to re-intensify to a tropical storm on 21 June. Tropical Storm Warnings were issued for the coast of North Carolina. Claudette was forecast to move over the coast of North Carolina into the western Atlantic Ocean on 21 June and be located south of Nova Scotia, Canada by late 22 June, the National Hurricane Center said.

Tropical Storm Claudette, USA, June 2021 – NHC

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