Flood watches and warnings were posted from Georgia to Maine as Andrea, now a “post-tropical” storm, moved swiftly up the Eastern Seaboard with heavy rain and wind that grounded hundreds of airline flights.
As much as 6 inches (15 centimeters) of rain may fall along the North American coast before Andrea veers away from land late on June 9, according to U.S. forecasters. A flash flood warning is in effect for the New York City area until 7:15 p.m. and a warning lasts until 2 p.m. tomorrow. A watch for Boston runs until 10 a.m. tomorrow.
About 450 flights were canceled as of 5 p.m. East Coast time, with New York’s LaGuardia, Philadelphia International and Newark Liberty airports most affected, according to FlightAware, a Houston-based tracking service. Delays of 90 minutes or longer were reported for flights into those airports, plus Boston’s Logan and New York’s Kennedy International, the Federal Aviation Administration said.
“While widespread flooding problems are not expected in the Northeast, Andrea will quickly move from the Southeast to the Atlantic Coast on Friday, bringing tropical downpours and urban flooding concerns to end the week,” Alex Sosnowski, a senior meteorologist for AccuWeather Inc., wrote on the State College, Pennsylvania-based forecaster’s website.
Andrea, the first storm of the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season, was 55 miles (88 kilometers) east-northeast of Raleigh, North Carolina, as of 5 p.m. local time, the National Hurricane Center said. The system’s top sustained winds were 45 mph, down from 65 mph yesterday.
The storm was moving northeast at 28 mph, a high speed that would help limit the amount of time Andrea has to drop rain over any one spot. The system is no longer considered tropical, with its center losing definition.
Andrea formed earlier this week in the Gulf of Mexico and moved ashore yesterday in northwestern Florida. It tossed off tornadoes, flooded roads and knocked down trees as it traveled northeast over land.
The hurricane center’s tracking map shows Andrea crossing eastern South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia, then entering the Atlantic near Ocean City, Maryland. It will remain close to shore until making landfall near Falmouth, Massachusetts, early tomorrow and on Nova Scotia and Newfoundland later in weekend.
Andrea’s wind speeds will remain at tropical-storm levels for about 24 hours, the center said.