Heavy rainfall expected overnight

September 20, 2013

Greater Houston area residents should prepare for potentially heavy rainfall tonight as well as throughout the weekend.

According to Brian Kyle from the National Weather Service, a cold front is slowly moving through northern parts of Texas to the coastal areas. While rainfall has been sporadic throughout the day, it’s expected to start again at around 7 p.m. However, Kyle said that the heaviest rains could hit any time from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

“Expect some showers and isolated thunderstorms ahead of [the front],” Kyle said.

As always, large amounts of precipitation could mean flooding in different parts of Houston. Kim Jackson, spokeswoman for the Harris County Flood Control District, said that there could be anywhere from 2-4 inches of rain widespread, and as much as seven inches in some isolated areas.

These conditions could affect both Harris and Fort Bend counties, but areas inside the urban center of Houston could see the possibility of more serious flooding, according to Jackson.

Jackson reminded residents to take proper precautions while out and about.

“Do not drive or walk into standing water because you never know how deep it is,” Jackson advised. “Just a very small amount can knock you off your feet or stall out your car. If you don’t have to go anywhere [tonight], stay at home.”

Earlier Friday, Houston Fire Department found a woman that had been helped out of Buffalo Bayou by a good Samaritan. Rescuers brought both individuals out of the bayou embankment. The woman was then taken to a nearby hospital.

Local school districts Spring Branch ISD and Houston ISD have not made any changes to their athletic schedules at this time. Katy ISD will monitor the situation, and if a change is necessary the game tonight between Mayde Creek and Katy may be postponed until tomorrow at 10 a.m. That change will be listed at www.katyisd.org/dept/athletics.

South Mayde Creek is the only local water source to come close to filling its bank, Jackson said. While it rose about 4-feet from the bank this morning, levels have since receded. If severe rains were to arrive, that level would rise again, she said.

A benefit Texans may see from the weekend rain could be an improvement in drought conditions. Houston’s water levels are better than the rest of the state, but still below average, said Ruben Solis, director of surface water resources for the Texas Water Development Board.

“It looks like there’s going to be an uptick in storage,” Solis said. “The real question is ‘how much?’ It really depends on how consistent- how long these rains last and how heavy they are. We’re in a wait and see mode at this point.”

Tim Heller, chief meteorologist at news partner KTRK Channel 13, said he believes the rains may bring some moderate “ponding” as opposed to flooding. “It’s been so dry that I think most of the rain should be soaked up,” Heller said.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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