Flash Flood Watch Issued for Southwest Virginia (Wythe, Smyth, Pulaski, Montgomery, Roanoke, Grayson, Carroll)

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West Virginia flooding - Stock. Photo courtesy: WVDOT
Stock photo, courtesy of WVDOT.

At 11:15 a.m. Friday, the National Weather Service in Blacksburg, Virginia, issued a flood watch for several localities in Southwest Virginia which will remain in effect into Monday.

According to NWS, “Hurricane Florence will slowly track inland this afternoon and into South Carolina tonight into Saturday, before turning northwest across the southern Appalachians Sunday, and heading into the central Appalachians Monday. With soils saturated or becoming saturated, the threat of flash flooding is likely to develop later this weekend into Monday.”

In total, heavy rain from Florence will lead to flash flooding across the area, especially by Saturday afternoon and evening into Monday. 4 to 8 inches of rain are expected, with locally higher amounts of 10 inches or more possible along the Blue Ridge.

Life-threatening flash flooding may develop as heavy rain bands occur this weekend into Monday. Streams and creeks may rise quickly during heavy rain and flood.

As the excessive rainfall occurs across the headwaters of the larger rivers, moderate to perhaps major flooding could occur especially along the New, Roanoke and Dan rivers Sunday night into early next week.

Rainfall of more than five inches in similar storms has been associated with an increased risk of landslides and rock slides. If you live in locations closer to the mountains and foothills…especially near a stream…be ready to leave in advance of the storm or as quickly as possible should rising water…moving earth…or rocks threaten. Consider postponing travel along mountain roads during the period of heavy rainfall.

“A Flash Flood Watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding. Flash flooding is a very dangerous situation,” warns the National Weather Service.

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