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Flood Watches issued for tropical downpours

Potential for heavy rain and minor flooding starting Wednesday
Published: Nov. 10, 2020 at 3:47 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 10, 2020 at 6:28 PM EST
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Overnight, skies turn overcast with scattered showers developing. Any rain overnight will be very light. The first wave of heavier rain likely won’t arrive until Wednesday around sunrise, just in time for the morning commute.

WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY

High pressure off the east coast along with Tropical Storm Eta in the Gulf will help to funnel in lots of tropical (humid) air. The combination of the two will deliver heavy rain starting early Wednesday and lingering into Thursday before tapering off Thursday afternoon.

Light rain develops after midnight tonight and will pick up in intensity Wednesday.
Light rain develops after midnight tonight and will pick up in intensity Wednesday.(WDBJ)

RAINFALL TOTALS: While model amounts have been trending slightly lower the past few days, guidance still suggests widespread 1″ to 3″ of rain is possible, with locally higher amounts of 3-5″ over the 2-day stretch. The highest totals are expected along and east of the the Appalachians and Blue Ridge Parkway where a FLOOD WATCH has been issued through 7PM Thursday.

FLOOD POTENTIAL: While last week’s dry weather will help reduce the flood risk, there will be tropical moisture along with mountains squeezing out the rain. Rain may also runoff more easily thanks to trees soaking less water up due to the late-season sun angle and fewer leaves on the trees as they go dormant.

The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Watch for heavy rain and potential flooding...
The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Watch for heavy rain and potential flooding through 7pm Thursday.(WDBJ)

Isolated flash flooding is possible if any rain bands linger over the same areas. Also, several area rivers such as the Roanoke and Dan River will need to be monitored for minor flooding late this week if the heavy rain materializes.

Rainfall totals may be in the 2-4" range over the next 48 hours.
Rainfall totals may be in the 2-4" range over the next 48 hours.(WDBJ)

FRIDAY

Any leftover rain will quickly sweep out of the region by Friday leading to a drier end to the week. Skies turn partly to mostly sunny Friday with highs in the upper 60s.

THE WEEKEND

It does appear we could be dealing with another front late in the weekend with additional rain possible, though not as heavy as this week. We will have more details on timing as we approach the middle of the week.