Tropical Depression Fred Brings Widespread Flooding, 20,000 Without Power in FL, GA

Over 20,000 residents in Florida and Georgia were left without power after Tropical Depression Fred made landfall, bringing heavy rainfall and widespread flooding.

According to data from Poweroutage.US, as of publication time, at least 13,540 Floridians were left without power on Tuesday while 12,765 power outages were reported in Georgia.

Across Florida, the counties of Jackson, Calhoun and Franklin all saw the most reported power outages, as they all had over 1,000 residents without power as of Tuesday morning.

In response to the reported outages in Georgia, a spokesperson for the state's Emergency Management Agency told Newsweek, "Our partners at Georgia Power and EMCs around the state are diligently working to restore power in the areas where electrical service is impacted by TD Fred. We encourage everyone to be patient and stay tuned to local forecasts as we have the potential for isolated tornadoes, gusty winds and flash flooding through Wednesday."

The reported power outages in both states comes as Tropical Depression Fred continues to move over the Southeast coast of the U.S. A map from the National Hurricane Center showed that Fred was located just above Georgia and Alabama as of Tuesday morning.

In an update, the National Hurricane Center said that "through Tuesday, heavy rainfall may lead to considerable flash, urban, small stream, and isolated river flooding impacts across portions of the Florida Panhandle, southeastern Alabama, and from western Georgia into the southern Appalachians."

The update continued, "By the middle of the week, Fred or its remnants will lift northward and impact the central Appalachians and Mid-Atlantic. Landslides are possible across the mountains of North Carolina."

As Fred made landfall on Monday in the Florida Panhandle, numerous flash flood warning were issued amid the storm's heavy rainfall.

At 6:45 p.m. EDT on Monday, the National Weather Service in Tallahassee reported "Tropical Storm Fred continues to move northward across the region this evening. Flooding has already been observed across the Florida Panhandle."

6:45pm ET | Tropical Storm Fred continues to move northward across the region this evening. Flooding has already been observed across the Florida Panhandle. In addition, multiple circulations have been noted on radar and the threat for a few tornadoes will continue into tonight.

— NWS Tallahassee (@NWSTallahassee) August 16, 2021

A video posted to Twitter by Charles Peek of the Weather Channel showed extensive flooding near Florida's highway 77 and 2321.

Widespread flooding in the Southport, FL area from TS #Fred. This at Hwy 77 & 2321. With numerous cars flooding out including a police vehicle that had to be pushed out after trying to help here. @weatherchannel @StephanieAbrams @TWCAlexWilson @NWSTallahassee #FLwx #flooding.

— Charles Peek (@CharlesPeekWX) August 16, 2021

Another photo posted to Twitter by meteorologist Melissa Thomas showed the flooding seen in Bay County, Florida.

Wow! This is why there are Flash Flood Warnings across the Florida Panhandle due to Tropical Storm Fred.

North Bear Creek Bridge in Bay County, sent to me by a friend. Road is submerged up ahead and the creek is right up on the bridge there.#TropicalStormFred #Fred #Flooding

— Melissa Thomas (@ThomasMelissaWx) August 17, 2021

Several flash flood warnings were also issued in parts of Georgia as Fred continued to move over the state.

In addition to flooding and power outages, several tornado warnings were issued in Georgia after Fred made landfall. According to the National Weather Service in Atlanta, tornado warnings were issued in the counties of Madison, Johnson, Haddock, Swords, Greensboro, Jeffersonville, Macon and Hogansville. The tornado warnings ended prior to publication time.

Prior to making landfall, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued an emergency declaration for several Florida counties seeking assistance from the federal government.

"Additionally, the Governor received briefings from the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) Director Kevin Guthrie and State Meteorologist Amy Godsey. As Fred continues to make landfall this evening, the state stands ready to address any unmet local needs," Florida Division of Emergency Management said in a statement.

Newsweek reached out to the Florida Division of Emergency Management for further comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Tropical Storm
Tropical Depression Fred made landfall on Monday, leaving over 20,000 without power in Florida and Georgia. Above, sunken boats rest on their sides after Tropical Storm Elsa made landfall nearby on July 7, 2021 in Cedar Key, Florida. Mark Wallheiser/Getty