When will drier weather return to the southeastern US?
By Kyle Elliott, AccuWeather meteorologist
June 13, 2019, 12:05:46 AM EDT
A piece of the storm system that dumped more than 12 inches of rain and triggered major flooding in parts of western North Carolina this past weekend was left behind over the Southeast this week.
As this entity developed into its own more mature storm system, showers and drenching thunderstorms erupted from the Florida Panhandle to eastern Georgia and South Carolina on Tuesday and Tuesday night.
The heaviest and most persistent downpours focused on southeastern Georgia and southern South Carolina on Tuesday night, and will continue to do so through Wednesday.
Because this storm system is tapping into tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, the atmosphere will be capable of producing very high rainfall rates in some communities.
Savannah, Georgia, received over 4 inches of rain from Tuesday afternoon into Tuesday night, while Charleston, South Carolina, received nearly 1 inch of rain.
Into Wednesday night, an additional 2-4 inches of rain is expected in these same areas, while a general 1-2 inches of rain will fall elsewhere.
"With this storm, the heaviest rain will be farther south and east in the Carolinas and Georgia, closer to the coast, when compared to the storm last week and weekend," said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Pydynowski.
The western parts of the Carolinas are forecast to receive around 1 inch of rain through Wednesday evening, which can still be enough to trigger localized flooding issues, especially in low-lying and poor drainage areas.
Residents and motorists closer to the coast will have to remain alert for more flooded roads and rapidly changing driving conditions due to variations in rainfall intensity over a short distance.
Motorists should be sure to slow down when traveling at highway speeds, or if standing water is present on the roadway, to reduce the risk of vehicles hydroplaning.
Remember never to drive through a flooded road, as doing so can put the lives of you and your occupants in danger.
Although flooding will threaten both lives and property through midweek, the rainfall can also be beneficial, since areas from the Florida Panhandle to the coastal Carolinas were in a moderate to severe drought as of the last update of the U.S. Drought Monitor released on June 6.
The rain from last week’s storm helped put a dent in the drought, but the additional rainfall through midweek should largely erase or at least ease the drought in many of these areas.
Showers and thunderstorms will spread back into the mid-Atlantic and New England from Wednesday night into Thursday, putting an end to the beautiful conditions on tap for Wednesday.
Meanwhile, a pocket of dry, less humid and refreshing air will arrive in the Southeast on Thursday following the midweek deluge. Only a few leftover showers are expected in the higher terrain of the Appalachians.
“By Friday, high pressure should build over the entire Southeast and bring dry conditions and plenty of sunshine to the region,” Pydynowski added.
Much to the dismay of those headed to the attractions at Orlando, the dry air will stop short of pushing showers and thunderstorms out of central and South Florida later this week.
Download the free AccuWeather app to stay alert of flood watches and warnings. Keep checking back for updates on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.
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