Months' worth of rain deluges Texas in a matter of days, elevating flood danger

By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
October 17, 2018, 1:18:32 AM EDT

A clash of unusually cold air for October and lingering tropical moisture will heighten the threat of heavy rain and the likelihood of flooding over the south-central United States, focused on Texas into late week.

Thanks to a strong norther, temperatures in parts of central Texas were 30-40 degrees Fahrenheit lower early this week when compared to Sunday. The average high for the middle of October is 79 in Dallas.

Parts of central Texas have already received 4-8 inches of rain from Friday to Tuesday morning. This is the equivalent of an entire month's worth of rain for October.

October Texas flooding

This photo from video provided by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department shows a helicopter crew from the Texas Department of Public Safety performing a rescue from the South Llano River near Junction, Texas, on Monday, Oct. 8, 2018. (Texas Parks and Wildlife Department via AP)

The heavy rain has caused rivers to swell. Major flooding has been occurring along a portion of the Llano River in the Edward Plateau region of west-central Texas.

There are reports of a bridge collapse in Kingsland, Texas, with pieces of the bridge flowing down the Llano River.

While flooding along these rivers over central Texas will occur prior to the end of this week, it may take until this weekend or next week before the surge of high water occurs in southeastern Texas.

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While rain is forecast to diminish to spotty showers at Wednesday, a new surge of tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico may lead to more rounds of drenching rain and a renewed risk of flooding on Thursday and Friday.

SC Fri regional 10.19 AM

The AccuWeather Local StormMax™ for portions of central Texas is projected to be 14 inches from Friday, Oct. 12 through Friday, Oct. 19.

A number of locations in central and coastal Texas have already experienced a top-five wettest meteorological autumn (Sept. 1-Nov. 30) on record with approximately six more weeks to go. Dallas has already had their all-time wettest autumn, breaking the old record of 21.82 inches set in 2015.

There are still a few pockets in Texas that are experiencing moderate long-term drought. However, by the end of this week, these drought pockets will have been all but erased.

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