Good Afternoon folks. After a pretty snappy cooldown towards the end of this weekend, a bigtime pattern change takes over, and gives us quite a soaking through the beginning and middle portions of the workweek. Today, I thought I'd break down the rain chances and possibility of flooding in a quick post to share with you what we're confident of as of now regarding the threat ahead.
Of primary note is that the Weather Prediction Center has issued a LEVEL 2 OF 4 risk of flooding for the entirety of the Tennessee through the first couple days of the workweek, indicating the notably elevated chance of flash flooding across a fairly widespread area. The area has been host to 250-300% of the normal rainfall totals over the last 7 or so days thanks to that robust system last week, so we already have a couple inches of saturation to work with, which definitely does us no favors.
Taking a look at the big picture, it really is no surprise we've been issued these advisories - model consensus seems to land on the Tennessee Valley being the bullseye for some 5-6" of rainfall by the end of the week, with isolated spots possibly being higher still. Keep in mind that, as of now, this appears to be a flooding-focused event, and NOT other forms of severe weather, but that should by no means make you shrug the threat off.
The leading cause of injuries and worse at the hands of weather is flooding, often times due to waters deceptively shallow appearance over roadways. With rainfall totals in this range, river rise and creeks flooding are a real possibility, and is worth taking seriously. Remember the rhyme - TURN AROUND, DON'T DROWN!
It should be noted that the minds at the Climate Prediction Center believe that this may just be the beginning of a more active pattern through this rest of December - climate data indicates there is an above average probability of seeing greater-than-usual rain totals over the next 4 weeks, and this seems to bare out in the data we have as well - even taking a look at the 7 day forecast, you can not only see that soaker of a midweek, but the lingering chance of showers (which may very well increase in coverage/intensity) by the end of the week. All this is to say that you should have one key takeaway from this - the chance of flooding is on the up-and-up this week, and we're keeping a hawks eye on it. Stay tuned over the next couple days for more updates!