Hurricane Sally is probably going to go into the record books. The National Hurricane Center says “historic, life-threatening” flooding is “likely” in portions of the northern Gulf Coast due to Sally’s excruciatingly slow pace.

The tortoise-like speed could bring up to two-and-a-half feet of rain in some places and produce storm surges as high as seven feet. Tornadoes were possible as well.

The storm was creeping north-northeast at a mere 2 mph early Wednesday and forecasters said to expect more of the same once it makes landfall.  

As it crawled along, Sally was suddenly intensifying. The center said it strengthened into a Category 2 hurricane with sustained winds of 105 mph, up from 85 mph late Tuesday.

Hurricane conditions were spreading onshore from Pensacola Beach, Florida westward to Dauphin Island, Alabama.

As of early Wednesday, Sally’s eye was about 60 miles south-southeast of Mobile, Alabama and 55 miles southwest of Pensacola, Florida, the hurricane center said.

Hurricane Sally ever-so-close to the Gulf Coast early on September 16, 2020. NOAA