Tropical Storm Lee weakens but still expected to cause flooding

Tropical Storm Lee, September 5, 2011 NASA image
Tropical Storm Lee has been downgraded to a tropical depression but it is still expected to cause flooding, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Monday.

According to the bulletin issued by the NHC at 10:00 a.m. CDT, "the remnants of Lee are expected to cause flooding from the Gulf Coast states to New England."

The NHC has hoisted Flash Flood Watches and Warnings from the Central Gulf Coast states, Northeastward across the Southern and Central Appalachians.

"Lee was last located near latitude 30.5 N and longitude 89.9 W. It has become extratropical over Southern Louisiana as it merged with a frontal zone with cool and dry air infiltrating the circulation center from the North and West. The extratropical low center is expected to turn towards the Northeast, bringing the center into Alabama by Monday night. Tropical moisture associated with the remnants of Lee will continue to interact with the frontal zone and extremely heavy rain is expected to fall in locations well in advance of the circulation center." the NHC bulletin reads.

Tropical Storm Lee was the twelfth named storm and thirteenth system overall of the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season, developing from a broad tropical disturbance over the Gulf on September 1. It was designated as Tropical Storm Lee the next day. Due to the large size, as well as the slow forward movement of the storm, heavy rainfall has occurred, and prolonged rainfall is expected in the southern Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and the Florida panhandle. The storm was expected to drop 10–15 inches (250–380 mm) of rain in coastal areas of those states, or as much as 20 inches (510 mm) in some areas. Lee was the first tropical cyclone to make landfall in Louisiana since Hurricane Gustav in 2008.
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