Spring rains will soak the South this week, which could put millions of people at risk of flash flooding, with the Weather Prediction Center highlighting an area that puts Houston in the bullseye for the worst of the potential flooding.
“Instances of flash flooding are considered likely from the middle and upper Texas Gulf Coast to areas inland across the southeast Texas Triangle, which includes the entire Houston metro region,” the prediction center said.
Several rounds of heavy rain are expected through the day Tuesday and into Wednesday as a stubborn area of low pressure lingers.
The prediction center has issued a Level 3 out of 4 risk for excessive rainfall Tuesday and Wednesday, as torrential rains target the Houston metro area as well as Beaumont, Texas.
More than 7 million people are under flash flood watches in southeastern Texas through Wednesday evening. The region could see rainfall rates as high as 2 to 3 inches per hour at times.
Forecast models are indicating as much as 3 to 7 inches of rain are possible through Wednesday, with some areas potentially getting as much as 10 inches.
“The probability for numerous significant flash floods events has increased,” the National Weather Service in Houston said. “There is an increased danger to lives and property due to flash flooding.”
The main concern will be for areas where storms begin to train, which occurs when storms roll over the same area for longer periods of time, leading to intense flash flooding.
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The prediction center also issued a broader area of excessive rainfall risk for much of southeast Texas and southwest Louisiana. This Level 2 risk includes places like Lake Charles, Louisiana, and College Station and Victoria, Texas.
The Level 2 risk broadens on Wednesday to include areas like Dallas, Shreveport, Louisiana, and Little Rock, Arkansas. These areas will most likely receive around 2 inches of rain, which will be heavy at times.
By the second half of the week, the excessive rainfall risk diminishes, though isolated showers and storms will remain in the forecast.
The threat for flooding will linger due to the already saturated soils.