Flood Watch in effect until 8 PM Sunday

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) –  A flood watch remains in effect for all of western Massachusetts until 8 p.m. Sunday.

A flood watch means that there is the potential for  street, stream and creek flooding as well as basement and possibly river flooding.

Remember if you encounter a flooded street, don’t drive through it instead “turn around, don’t drown.”

Why is there a flooding concern?

  • Leftover snow in the hills to the west of the Pioneer Valley and in the Berkshires will melt more and release water into area streams, creeks and rivers.
  • Plenty of snow in Vermont and New Hampshire will begin to melt releasing water upstream
  • Heavy rain will fall all over western Massachusetts. Potentially between 1 and 3 inches of rain by the end of Sunday.
  • Vegetation is still dormant from the winter and will not help soak up rainfall
  • Ice jams could possibly form on some area rivers mainly in Franklin and Berkshire Counties.

However, some of our recent conditions will help us.

  • Believe it or not we’ve had *less* snowfall than normal this past winter. 45.5″ since November compared to a normal snowfall season of 49″ which means less snowpack available to melt
  • So far March has been drier than normal. We’ve only had 1.33″ of liquid precipitation (rain/melted snow) in the lower Pioneer Valley this month. A typical March normally has 3.39″ of liquid. So we could use some rain.

Heavy rain will fall overnight, potentially bringing over an inch of rainfall by 7AM Sunday for areas of western Massachusetts that see the heaviest downpours.

Sunday will be wet, but the rain won’t be quite as relentless. I expect on and off rainfall through the day with potentially another round of heavy rain Sunday night into Monday morning.

Some wet snowflakes could fall over the hills early Monday morning as temperatures look to drop into the mid 30s.

Showers linger through Monday, but we dry out by Monday night.

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