Parts of the Carolinas could see heavy rain, flooding and strong winds as remnants of Tropical Storm Fred and thunderstorms move through the region this week.
Tropical Storm Fred was about 190 miles west-southwest of Tampa, Florida, with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph at 5 p.m. Sunday. Its remnants could bring heavy rainfall and possible flooding to western North and South Carolina through the middle of the week, according to the National Hurricane Center.
But portions of the Carolinas could also see thunderstorms, which may bring hazardous weather to some areas, earlier in the week, forecasters say.
Here’s the forecast for around the Carolinas.
▪ Western and Piedmont North Carolina and upstate South Carolina: “Scattered to numerous” thunderstorms are possible starting Sunday afternoon and into the evening, according to the National Weather Service. Some of the storms could last until the early morning.
“A few of these storms could become quite strong and produce large hail, heavy rainfall and damaging winds,” the weather service says.
Periods of heavy rainfall could lead to a risk of flash flooding, and most of the area is under a slight risk of excessive rainfall, the NWS’s Greenville-Spartanburg office says. The storms are expected to be slow-moving and could also bring “torrential downpours.”
▪ South Carolina midlands area: The NWS Columbia office says showers and thunderstorms could spread through the area through Sunday evening, with locally heavy rainfall possible.
▪ Central North Carolina: “Scattered to locally numerous” thunderstorms on Sunday and Monday could bring locally heavy downpours and flooding, the weather service says.
“Heavy rainfall could lead to localized flooding Monday through Wednesday,” the NWS says.
▪ Eastern North and South Carolina: Slow-moving thunderstorms are possible and could bring localized flash flooding Sunday afternoon through evening in northeastern North Carolina, the NWS says. More heavy rainfall and flooding are possible Monday and Tuesday.
The NWS’s Newport/Morehead office, which covers eastern North Carolina, says “a few morning storms could pop up along the Crystal Coast mid-morning” on Sunday with more “widespread activity” possible in the afternoon.
The Wilmington office, which covers southeastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina, says there’s a 50% to 60% chance of showers and thunderstorms inland and a 30% to 40% chance on the coast. Chances should increase Sunday afternoon and decrease Sunday night.
The Charleston, South Carolina, office says rainfall is possible over the next few days, with 3-4 inches possible through Thursday morning in some areas.
Flood advisories had been issued for parts of the area Sunday afternoon.
Remnants of Fred could then bring between 3-6 inches of rain to western North and South Carolina through Tuesday, according to the National Hurricane Center. The rainfall could lead to “areal, urban, small stream and river flooding impacts.”
“Isolated maximum storm totals of 9 inches are expected due to the combination of Fred and a preceding frontal boundary,” the hurricane center says.
The NWS says tropical moisture associated with Fred’s remnants is expected to produce “periodic heavy rainfall” through the middle of the week.
“The flood threat will steadily increase on Monday as showers and thunderstorms wet the soil,” the NWS says. “At this time, the greatest potential for excessive rain appears to be Tuesday and Tuesday night as a remnant circulation from Fred moves northward to the west of the region. This could result in a flash flooding threat, especially in areas that receive multiple rounds of heavy rainfall.”
Fred had restrengthened some Sunday and was moving north, northwest at 10 mph as of 5 p.m. It’s expected to track across the central and eastern Gulf of Mexico Sunday and Monday and into the deep South early in the week.