Pinpoint Weather: Record rainfall this month, more rain this week.


Record rainfall continues to impact the region this week.

The rainfall that the area experienced for over a week has no signs of let up until after the weekend. Although the pattern has changed the result is the same.  Last week there was an upper level area of low pressure over the Tennessee Valley that threw several inches of rain into the Commonwealth leading to significant flooding by Friday. A brief break on Saturday then more significant rain on Sunday brought Flash Flooding to Henry county.  Memorial Day was a day to drain some of the flooded areas.  More rain is on the way the rest of the week and into the weekend.

Currently there is a storm of tropical origin brewing over Florida and when I say of tropical origin, I mean there is the potential for a lot of rain. The warmer the storm the more water the molecules can hold and the more rain we will get when they release. This wave is expected to move over the eastern two thirds of Virginia late Wednesday night into Thursday morning. The flooding potential is high for the area so any more rain will run off quickly and the Blue Ridge will be a focal point for a good deal of the rain.

More rain is on the way on Friday and Saturday as another batch of moisture moves in from the west and south.  There will be an area of High Pressure drifting over the western Atlantic helping to slow the eastward movement of the rain and keep the Mid Atlantic region in a period of rain and some storms into Saturday. The flooding needless to say will be very likely on the saturated soils.

Sunday will be the beginning of an extended period of dry weather that will be very welcomed and needed. The temperatures from Sunday to Monday will be a bit cooler than normal, reaching the middle 70s.  We are expecting to start the meteorological summer (June, July and August) on a dry note.

June 1st is also the official start of the Atlantic Hurricane season.

Record Rainfall:  The rainfall for the month of May in Roanoke is legendary and has re-written the books with 10.73” of rain so far. The old record of 10.14” has stood since 1940.  There are still 5 days left in the month and at least 4 of them will be rainy. The wettest meteorological spring (March, April and May) was 2003 when 18.67” of rain was measured, this spring the gauge at Roanoke Regional has reached 19.81” with more on the way. The numbers I am using for this year are unofficial, but have been retrieved from the climate page of the National Weather Service.

Stay Safe and healthy.

John Carroll
Chief Meteorologist

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