Sally weakens to tropical storm on Gulf Coast

Tracking the Tropics

This GOES-16 GeoColor satellite image taken Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020, at 3 p.m. EDT., and provided by NOAA, shows Hurricane Sally moving slowly towards the coast from the Gulf of Mexico. Forecasters now expect landfall late Tuesday or early Wednesday near the Alabama-Mississippi state line. (NOAA via AP)

MIAMI — Sally has weakened to a tropical storm but the Gulf Coast region still faces issues from the slow-moving storm’s drenching rains and flooding.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says the storm’s maximum sustained winds decreased Wednesday afternoon to near 70 mph (110 kph) with additional weakening expected as Sally moves inland.

As of 1 p.m. CDT, the storm was centered about 30 miles (45 kilometers) north-northeast of Pensacola, Florida, and moving north-northeast near 5 mph (7 kph).

Sally lumbered ashore Wednesday morning near the Florida-Alabama line as Category 2 hurricane with 105 mph (165 kph) winds and rain measured in feet, not inches. It has swamped homes and trapped people in high water as it creeps inland for what could be a long, slow and disastrous drenching across the Deep South.

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