Post-tropical cyclone soaks US southeast

  • 08/06/2016
A NASA satellite image showing Colin over the US southeast coast (Reuters)
A NASA satellite image showing Colin over the US southeast coast (Reuters)

By Letitia Stein

Colin the storm has dissipated off coastal North Carolina after blasting torrential rains and winds across a broad swath of the US Southeast, with Florida receiving the brunt of the impact from the tropical storm.

The storm, now a post-tropical cyclone, was 190 km southwest of coastal North Carolina on Tuesday at 11am EDT.

As it moved off to sea, it contained winds up to 95km/h, the US National Hurricane Centre said.

Severe weather could affect North Carolina's Outer Banks for several hours more and bring more rainfall to drenched Florida.

The storm made landfall in northwest Florida early on Tuesday and swept across Georgia on its path to the Atlantic, affecting coastal South and North Carolina, according to the National Weather Service.

Some of Colin's greatest impacts were removed from its direct path.

The storm dumped as much as 25.4cm of rain on Florida communities around Tampa, Tallahassee and Gainesville, according to the National Weather Service.

Roads and some coastal areas flooded in parts of Florida.

The threat of floods remained a concern on Tuesday in the Tampa Bay region, which saw some of the heaviest sustained rainfall.

Tampa continued to supply sandbags to residents on Tuesday, with 2.5 to 12.7cm of more rain expected into the evening.

Some flooded roads remained closed throughout the region.

Before the storm hit, Florida Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in 34 of the state's 67 counties.

Colin also threatened crops in Florida, the country's biggest citrus producer, which sent US orange juice futures on Monday to their highest in more than two years.

The storm is part of a brisk start to the Atlantic hurricane season that runs through to the end of November.

Over the US Memorial Day holiday weekend, the Carolinas were lashed by heavy rain and winds from Tropical Storm Bonnie.