It still doesn’t have an official name, but “Potential Tropical Cycline One” has already made its presence felt in South Florida on Saturday morning. The storm, which made landfall near Fort Myers at around 8am, is producing a broad range of thunderstorms that are dumping heavy rain and gusty winds across the state.
The bulk of the storm has now passed out to the Atlantic, but some trailing precipitation is expected to continue into early afternoon in Fort Lauderdale and parts of Miami.
Flash flooding in some Miami neighborhoods have damaged buildings and flooded streets. The Miami Fire Department says they have responded to reports of several trapped of cars and are urging people to stay off the roads and warning drivers not to drive through standing water.
Miami Mayor Daniella Levine Cava warned on social media that the entire county was getting slammed.
“We are experiencing heavy rainfall and flooding across Miami-Dade,” Levine Cava tweeted. “I urge our community to stay safe and stay off the roads until conditions improve.”
The National Weather Service reported 11 inches of rain fell over downtown Miami as of 9 a.m. Saturday. South Miami had recorded just over nine and a half inches.
Wind shear and dry air appears to be limiting the system’s intensity, which could still become Tropical Storm Alex if it strengthens enough once it reaches the Atlantic Ocean.
Elsewhere, Naples reported heavy rainfall earlier Saturday morning, with some areas seeing as much as 8.5 inches. Some coastal areas reported flooding but television images showed utility vehicles transiting the streets with just shallow standing water.