Heavy rain and repeated thunderstorms to elevate flood risk across southern states
Threats: Heavy rain, flash flooding, severe storms
States affected: AR, LA, MS, TN, AL, KY, GA, IL, IN
When: Tuesday, March 23 - Thursday, March 25
Response and recovery efforts underway in areas affected by last week’s severe weather will be impeded by multiple days of storms and heavy rainfall. That outbreak saw 54 reported tornadoes mainly across Mississippi and Alabama, with nearly 80 reports of damaging wind across several states.
An active pattern will send several cold fronts through the region, setting the stage for a prolonged period of stormy weather. An abundance of Gulf moisture will surge northward, providing fuel for flooding rainfall beginning on Tuesday afternoon across Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Rain will spread east into central Alabama and Georgia on Wednesday, reaching the southern Appalachians on Thursday.
The heaviest rainfall amounts of 8-12 inches at rates over 2"/hr are expected from southeastern Louisiana through southwestern Alabama.
Travel disruptions are likely to occur mainly in flood-prone areas and during any strong or severe storms, especially later in the week. Additionally, the influx of moisture will cause areas of fog along stretches of I-44, I-40, I-55 and I-20. Low visibility can lead to multi-vehicle accidents, so transportation agencies may want to consider alternate routes or allocate longer travel time for trucks moving through those regions.
Businesses should review the flood safety section of their emergency plan and ensure that employees are aware of all procedures related to flash flooding. This is also a good time to look at where your assets are located in relation to flood zones and determine any changes needed to your SkyGuard® service. AccuWeather For Business can provide site-specific warnings for varying rainfall amounts and rates that are determined based on geographical location, flood frequency, and site design and material.
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