Tornado watch issued for 4 states as Fred continues march north

Flash flooding, tornadoes cause damage across Georgia, Carolinas

A tornado watch was issued for four states Wednesday as the remnants of Tropical Depression Fred continued their march up the spine of the Appalachian Mountains.

As of 11 a.m. Eastern, Fred was situated southwest of State College, Pennsylvania, moving northeast at 20 mph, according to the Weather Prediction Center. The storm had winds of 25 mph. The National Hurricane Center has downgraded Fred to a post-tropical cyclone.

Happening now

Fred has prompted flash flood watches in at least a half-dozen states as it moves closer to the heavily populated Northeast U.S. According to the WPC, another 2 to 4 inches of rain is possible across the Upper Ohio River Valley, the Mid-Atlantic and New England, with some places receiving as much as a half-foot of rain. Remember, it’s never safe to drive through floodwaters.

Tornadoes and damaging wind are also possible with storms that develop Wednesday. A tornado watch was issued until 8 p.m. Eastern for parts of Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. The District of Columbia is also included in the watch. The Storm Prediction Center has placed eastern Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia under a slight risk of severe weather.

Damage so far

Possible tornadoes spun up by Fred have been blamed for damage in the Carolinas and Georgia, the Associated Press reported

Radar estimates Tuesday from the National Weather Service Office in Greenville, South Carolina, showed upwards of a foot of rain fell in parts of the region.

WHNS-TV reported several counties in western North Carolina declared states of emergency because of flooding. Near Asheville, where an emergency shelter had been established, some roads had to be closed due to flooding.

In Georgia, a road collapsed near Homer after rushing water washed away the ground surrounding a culvert that was under the road, according to WAGA-TV.

The forecast

By Thursday, the remnants of Fred are forecast to be over central New York and producing nasty weather across much of New England. Another 2 to 3 inches of rain is expected across eastern New York, Vermont and New Hampshire, which could lead to some flash flooding. Strong storms are also possible.