Fay Brings Catastrophe To Florida

Good morning everyone. Well, in my continued efforts to get the site going again, I’ve decided to put up another post regarding Fay. Since the last time I spoke about Fay on Tuesday night and Wednesday, the storm has continued to spin around the Sunshine State and spread copious amounts of rain. Some areas, particularly in Northern and Eastern Florida, have received in upwards of 30 inches of rainfall according to an article posted on Bloomberg.com earlier on Friday.

The latest advisory and discussion from the National Hurricane Center calls for more of the same across Northern Florida, the Florida Panhandle, Southern Georgia, and Southeastern Alabama. The forecast calls for another 4 to 8 inches to fall in those areas with some isolated regions getting as much as another foot of rain. Not to be left out are the winds, which are still formidable at 50 miles per hour with higher gusts. Areas in Northeastern Florida such as Jacksonville have reported wind gusts in excess of 55 to 60 miles per hour.

As a result of the heavy rainfall in much of Florida over the past five days, there has been catastrophic flooding. President Bush has gotten the White House into action in response to this devastating storm that may be the wettest ever in the Sunshine State. Bush, who is in the waning days of his Presidency, and whose older brother Jeb previously served as Governor of Florida, declared the state under emergency on Thursday. Damage estimates in Brevard County alone are in the range of $12 million including $2.6 million in beach erosion.

Tropical Storm Fay has had quite a history in its journey. In just the past five days alone, the storm has crossed the state of Florida three times. The first time, the storm impacted Key West at about 3:00 PM EDT on Monday afternoon, the second time was on Tuesday morning when the system again came ashore near Cape Romano, and after slowly grinding across Florida over a day or so, Fay re-entered the Atlantic off Daytona Beach before coming onshore again on Thursday afternoon near Flagler Beach.

After making its second landfall in Southwestern Florida, Fay did something that would seem to many as unusual, it strengthened over land. Buoyed by the warm moisture laden marshes of the Everglades, Tropical Storm Fay had a boomerang effect, and actually reached its peak intensity of 65 miles per hour. Storms do tend to maintain much of their strength over Florida due to the flat land that characterizes this popular vacation spot. Fay is the fourth such storm to make landfall across the state in three separate locations, and the first to do so in some 50 years. Currently, the death toll stands at about 25 after two people were killed by the heavy surf near Flagler Beach, and three more bodies were discovered in Haiti.