"Reminder - It is impossible to know how deep the water is just by looking at it."

The National Weather Service warning those in the path of the slow-moving Hurricane Sally of “historic life-threatening flooding.”

  • FYI:  Hurricanes (also called “tropical cyclones“) are storms with winds 74 mph or higher. Storms with winds below 74 mph are “tropical storms.”
    • As a hurricane gets closer to shallow waters and land, the winds surrounding the center of it blows water to the surface, causing storm surges and flooding.
    • Although a hurricane’s strength (category) is measured by its wind speed, it’s the rising water levels that lead to dangerous and life-threatening storm surges & flooding
  • LATEST: Hurricane Sally, the 18th Atlantic storm of the year, is slowly inching toward the northern Gulf Coast and is expected to make landfall on Wednesday along the Mississippi and Alabama coastline and the western Florida Panhandle as a Category 1 hurricane.
    • FEMA has already declared state of emergencies in Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi.
    • NWS has issued storm surge warnings (danger of life-threatening rising waters moving inland from the coastline) in parts of Alabama, Mississippi, and western Florida through late Thursday.
    • The storm is expected to weaken as it travels north through Georgia and the Carolinas.


  • Category 1: 74-95 mph
  • Category 2: 96-110 mph
  • Category 3: 111-129 mph
  • Category 4: 130-156 mph
  • Category 5: 157 mph or higher