Meteorologists warn that a new storm is expected to bring additional weather misery this week to areas struggling to recover from a relentless series of weekend storms and tornadoes.
On Tuesday, downpours and gusty thunderstorms will drench areas from central Texas to central Arkansas and southern Tennessee, meteorologists at AccuWeather said.
The new weather system will further soak sodden areas through Thursday, weather.com meteorologist Chris Dolce said.
“After a few dry days, rain will return to some of the waterlogged cities in those regions, exacerbating the flooding situation,” Dolce said.
Roughly 70 rivers were in flood stage as of midday Monday in the central USA, the National Weather Service said. Overall, more than 250 river gauges reported levels above flood stage from the Great Lakes to Texas. (Each river can have several gauges.)
The greatest concern in coming days will be in Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia on Wednesday into early Thursday.
Severe storms, including the chance for tornadoes, are forecast to fire up on Wednesday from Dallas to Nashville, AccuWeather said.
Floodwaters on the Ohio River in both Louisville and Cincinnati are at their highest level in about 20 years. The river was expected to reach moderate flood stage along the southern border of Ohio and West Virginia in the coming days, the weather service said.
The rain has made this the wettest February ever recorded in Louisville (10.47 inches), Pittsburgh (7.04 inches) and South Bend, Ind. (8.07 inches),
The weather service said the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport is enduring its third-wettest February on record.
In Cincinnati, Andrew Scheetz’s basement was swamped by 4 feet of water.
“We’re pumping 420 gallons a minute,” he said as a hose pumped water out from the basement into the street. “But we don’t know if it’s really helping because water is still coming in through the foundation.”
In Kentucky, 2.9 inches of rain Saturday capped off one of the wettest weeks, and months, in Louisville history. The Ohio River rose more than 20 feet above normal, stranding residents, waterlogging cars and submerging local homes and businesses.
Mayor Greg Fischer said he would ask Federal Emergency Management Agency for assistance.
“We started assessing preliminary damage for an emergency declaration,” Fischer said. “It looks like the damage will exceed the minimum requirement, which is $2.8 million or so.”
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
February 27th, 2018