Tropical Storm Bertha forms, hits South Carolina coast, dissipates in a day
A tropical storm which made landfall at the eastern coast in the United States, dissipated in a day. Tropical Storm Bertha surprised the South Carolina coast on Wednesday, forming, making landfall within two hours and was downgraded before sundown, news agency AP reported.
Forecasters expected the bad weather, but didn’t predict it to organise so quickly and become the second named storm before the official start of this year’s Atlantic hurricane season.
Bertha was named around 8 am on Wednesday and was onshore east of Charleston by 9:30 am. The state Department of Natural Resources called it “a sunrise surprise”. Six hours after the tropical storm formed, the National Hurricane Centre downgraded it to a depression well inland.
They said Bertha was no longer a tropical depression at 5 pm and stopped issuing advisories.
Bertha, however, did cause headache for NASCAR. The rain accompanying the tropical storm forced the postponement of its Cup Series race. The Alsco Uniforms 500, a 208-lap race, was rescheduled for Thursday. It will be the fourth Cup Series race since NASCAR returned to action from a two-month coronavirus shutdown 10 days ago.
Less than 1,000 power outages and scattered downed trees were reported as Bertha and its 80 kmph maximum sustained winds moved onshore and into eastern South Carolina.
Bertha moved rapidly inland, spreading up to 4 inches (10 centimetres) of rain into parts of North Carolina and Virginia.
This is the record sixth year in a row Atlantic storms have formed before the official June 1 start of the season.
Last week, Tropical Storm Arthur had formed off the US east coast before veering out to sea causing little damage. Most pre-season forecasts call for an over-active Atlantic season surpassing the long-term average of 12 systems.