Elsa brings heavy rain, winds to Coastal Empire and Lowcountry

WSAV Hurricane Central

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Elsa made landfall as a tropical storm Wednesday morning along the north Florida coast, and most local impacts were not felt until the evening.

The storm’s biggest impacts were seen south of the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry.

At least one person was killed in Jacksonville, Florida when a tree fell and struck two cars.

In St. Mary’s, Georgia, at Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base, 10 people were injured. The Camden County Emergency Management Agency said a tornado touched down in the city’s downtown area.

Closer to home, WSAV saw reports of heavy rain, downed trees, flooding and power outages.

In Long County, a tree snapped in half, falling onto the roof of a mobile home. No injuries were reported there.

In Savannah, a car became stranded in floodwaters on Abercorn Street near 61st street. First responders closed down the area to traffic.

Damages are still being assessed locally and will continue into the day Thursday.

Local officials are urging residents who may be out on the road to avoid flooded streets and remain weather aware. Thousands remain without power as of early Thursday morning.

Keep reading for a recap on Elsa’s impacts in the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry.


12 a.m.

BLUFFTON, S.C. (WSAV) — Wind, rain and lightning have picked up in the Lowcountry.

A tornado warning in effect for portions of Beaufort and Jasper counties expired just after midnight.

The National Weather Service called this “a very dangerous storm.”

Storm Team 3 tracked some strong gusts in the area, with one up to 90mph:

WSAV’s Andrew Davis was out at Wright Park in Bluffton earlier as conditions started to pick up:


10:30 p.m.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — It’s been quiet in Savannah for much of the evening, but conditions are beginning to worsen.

“Alright folks, Elsa is almost here,” Savannah Mayor Van Johnson tweeted. “Get off of the streets, hunker down and let’s stay safe.”

Heavy rain is starting to pick up in the Hostess City, from downtown to the southside, and surrounding areas. Check out this video from a viewer in Pooler:

Let us know how things are looking in your area. Take a photo or video and email us at pics@wsav.com.


10 p.m.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — As Elsa makes its way through the Coastal Empire, some areas are reporting power outages.

According to Georgia Power, 86 power outages have been reported in Chatham County and 42 power outages were reported in Glynn County.

The parking lot of Southeast Georgia Health System in Brunswick has also flooded.

9:45 p.m.


BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WSAV) — Residents in Beaufort County can expect up to 4 inches of rain between 8 p.m. to 2 a.m., according to Bluffton Emergency Management Director Lee Levesque.

The county might also see wind gusts up to 30 mph, but not sustaining. Residents are asked to remain indoors throughout the night and avoid traveling on roads.

“Looks like we might be able to dodge a bullet tonight but either way we’re ready to go, come sun up we’re ready to call it a day,” Levesque said.

As of this update, however, there have been no major weather threats have been reported in Jasper County, Yemassee, Hilton Head Island or Beaufort County. All of these areas are experiencing light rain.


8:30 p.m.

photo: Long County Fire Department

LUDOWICI, Ga. (WSAV) — WSAV crews are headed to the scene of a tree down on a home in Ludowici.

The Long County Fire Department shared a photo that shows a tree in half on top of a mobile home.

No word on any injuries at this time.

A tornado watch and tropical storm warning are both in effect for Long County.


7:30 p.m.

ST. MARY’S, Ga. (WSAV) — A tornado has touched down in the downtown St. Mary’s area, according to the Camden County Emergency Management Agency (EMA).

Video from an RV park on the base shows mobile homes overturned, trees down and debris scattered.

“That’s where we’re focusing our efforts. There have been some buildings that appear to have some degree of damage,” said base spokesman Scott Bassett.

“I was down on the floor in the pantry. I felt the tornado walk across the roof,” said one storm witness in St. Mary’s. (Photo: 6 p.m. Wednesday)

About 10 people were injured and taken to hospitals by ambulance, Bassett said.

Filming the damage, Sergio Rodriguez called it “utter chaos.”

Camden County EMA is asking residents to shelter in place.

Contributions from The Associated Press


6:25 p.m.

JESUP, Ga. (WSAV) — A tornado warning has been issued for Wayne County until 6:45 p.m.

According to Storm Team 3, the storm is completely rain-wrapped west of Brunswick, moving to the north at 50 mph.

Stay inside and at the lowest level of your home away from windows.

MORE ELSA COVERAGE:

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories