Claudette Strengthens Back Into Tropical Storm, Moves Towards The Carolinas

Photo: National Hurricane Center

Claudette has regained strength and is now a tropical storm again as it barrels towards North and South Carolina on Monday (June 21) morning with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.

Claudette dumped heavy rain and spawned tornados when it made landfall along the Gulf Coast over the weekend. It dumped up to 15 inches of rain as it moved across Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and the Florida panhandle.

Greg Cromer, the mayor of Slidell, Louisiana, told that he hasn't seen that much rain since 1995 when a storm dumped 25 inches of rain.

"The difference between then and last night was in 1995, we had 25 inches of rain in 24 hours," Cromer said. "Last night, we had 10 to 12 in three hours."

"If we'd had a fourth hour," he continued, "we would've been looking at a substantial amount of damage this morning.

The storm claimed the lives of 13 people, including nine children and one adult who died in a multi-vehicle car accident on an Alabama highway. A 24-year-old man and a three-year-old boy were killed when a tree fell on their house near Tuscaloosa, and a 23-year-old woman died after her car crashed into a flooded creek.

As Claudette moved east, the storm gained strength and now threatens the Carolinas with heavy rain and strong winds. A tropical storm warning was in effect along the coast, stretching from Cape Fear, North Carolina, to the Outer Banks. Claudette is expected to dump several inches of rain across the two states and could spawn tornados.

Claudette is moving at 25 mph and is expected to head into the Atlantic Ocean by the end of the day before moving north towards Nova Scotia.

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