DEATH TOLL CLIMBS AS ALLISON HEADS NORTHEAST
June 14, 2001 The death toll continued to climb as the remnants of Tropical Storm Allison moved slowly eastward from Texas and Louisiana. Up to 34 storm-related deaths have been reported since Allison first moved ashore in southeast Texas. Records indicate at least 22 people died in Texas, one in Louisiana, one in Mississippi and nine in Florida. The Florida deaths include five incidents where swimmers were caught in heavy surf or riptides near Pensacola. A commercial fisherman was also reported missing in the Gulf and presumed drowned. (Click NOAA satellite image for larger view.)
NOAA's National Weather Service says extensive flooding and wind damage was reported as Allison made her way through northeast Florida and into Georgia. While the rainfall had a positive effect of easing some of the lingering drought conditions in that region, storms associated with Allison caused damage to a number of Georgia cities including Augusta, Macon and Valdosta. Georgia Governor Roy Barnes declared states of emergency in 14 east Georgia counties. A tornado destroyed several homes in Madison County, Fla., and an estimated 10 inches of rain was reported in Jacksonville where thousands of homes were damaged.
Before moving eastward, Allison dumped rainfall amounts in excess of 35 inches in parts of southeast Texas damaging more than 16,000 homes and businesses and displacing over 10,000 families. Twenty eight counties were declared federal disaster areas by President Bush. Southern Louisiana had more than 500 homes and businesses damaged, and Governor Mike Foster declared states of emergency in 25 of the state's 64 parishes.
By mid-day Thursday, the broad center of low pressure associated with the remnants of Tropical Storm Allison had moved to southeastern North Carolina. The system was tracking slowly north by northeast and appeared to be moving toward the cooler waters off Cape Hatteras where conditions for re-invigorating are not favorable.
The forecast for the next 24 to 48 hours for southeastern Virginia and northeast North Carolina calls for widespread thunderstorms and heavy rain which could result in low land flooding and minor river flooding.
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