• Bertha to hit Carolinas, Virginia on Wednesday
  • Heavy rains, flooding expected
  • 2nd named storm in Atlantic's hurricane season
  • Florida already experienced storm

A tropical storm officially named Bertha was reported to have caused some disturbances in Florida and is heading to fall over the Carolinas and Virginia.

According to a Fox News report, tropical storm Bertha was predicted to move onto the shore of Charleston, South Carolina by midday on Wednesday (May 27).

According to the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami, Bertha is about 30 miles east-southeast of Charleston and as of 8:30 am on Wednesday, it was moving nine miles per hour northwest with a maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour.

After hitting the shore, the storm would continue to move inland across eastern and northern South Carolina later Wednesday, and west-central North Carolina by night-time. The disturbance caused flooding and heavy rains in Florida earlier in the week and, with a tropical storm warning issued in the coast of South Carolina from Edisto Beach to South Santee River, the area should expect a similarly heavy downpour.

"South Carolina is going to get a lot of rain," Fox News senior meteorologist, Janice Dean said. "A lot of heavy rainfall and the potential for thunderstorms."

Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the center of the storm. It is reported that Bertha would have a total rain accumulation of two to four inches while an isolated eight inches of rain is possible across eastern and central South Carolina into west-central to far southeastern North Carolina, and southwest Virginia.

"Heavy rainfall will be the biggest threat, along with tropical storm-force winds along portions of the South Carolina coast," the NHC said.

"This rainfall may produce life-threatening flash flooding.” North Carolina and Virginia already experienced flash-flooding last week because of a stalled storm system called “cutoff low”.

A cutoff low, according to Fox News, is a weather phenomenon that occurs when areas of low pressure (storm systems) moving from West to East are steered off course from the strong winds that move them around the atmosphere called “jet streams”; these storm systems remain stationary for days and can wander in any direction.

The NHC said that Bertha is expected to lessen its intensity into a tropical depression once it hits inland and would weaken further overnight.

Bertha was officially named a tropical storm on Wednesday and is the second named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season.

Arthur and Bertha are the two tropical storms that had formed in 2020 and have continued a pattern of “preseason activity” for six consecutive years.

A satellite image from September 2019 of Tropical Storm Dorian. US forecasters predict an 'above normal' 2020 Atlantic hurricane season
A satellite image from September 2019 of Tropical Storm Dorian. US forecasters predict an 'above normal' 2020 Atlantic hurricane season NOAA/RAMMB / Andrew CABALLERO-REYNOLDS