Getting ready for substantial rainfall the next 72 hours!

The strong Pacific storm is bearing down on Montana and with it comes the potential for heavy rainfall at times, with the snow level very high, so the danger of rain on snow will only make the snow in the mountains melt faster.

Here is a snapshot of the state of Montana and then a NWS graphic that shows the potential rainfall amounts for our area. This could change in the next day with moisture shifting more to the west, but that information won’t be updated until overnight or Friday morning.

As the National Weather Service monitors this storm moving our way be prepared for rising creeks, stream and rivers. Here are a few highlights pasted along from the NWS after an early afternoon briefing today. Be careful around rivers, streams and creeks.

HILL-CASCADE-CHOUTEAU-BLAINE-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...HAVRE...GREAT FALLS...BIG SANDY...
FORT BENTON...CHINOOK
1248 PM MDT THU MAY 19 2011

...FLOOD WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM FRIDAY MORNING THROUGH LATE
SATURDAY NIGHT...

THE FLOOD WATCH CONTINUES FOR

* PORTIONS OF CENTRAL MONTANA AND NORTH CENTRAL MONTANA...
  INCLUDING THE FOLLOWING AREAS...IN CENTRAL MONTANA...CASCADE.
  IN NORTH CENTRAL MONTANA...BLAINE...CHOUTEAU AND HILL.

* FROM FRIDAY MORNING THROUGH LATE SATURDAY NIGHT

* RAIN IS EXPECTED TO MOVE INTO CENTRAL AND NORTH CENTRAL MONTANA
  EARLY FRIDAY MORNING...WITH PERIODS OF RAIN CONTINUING THROUGH
  SATURDAY NIGHT. SNOW LEVELS ARE FAIRLY HIGH WITH THIS STORM
  SYSTEM SO RAIN WILL FALL ON MOUNTAIN SNOWPACK CAUSING
  ACCELERATED SNOWMELT. AT LOWER ELEVATIONS...SOILS ARE UNUSUALLY
  MOIST AND WILL BE UNABLE TO ABSORB THE ADDITIONAL PRECIPITATION.

* THE RUNOFF WILL SWELL STREAMS AND CREEKS COMING OUT OF THE
  MOUNTAINS...CAUSING FLOODED ROADS AND FIELDS. SOME ROADS MAY
  BECOME WASHED OUT.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A FLOOD WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR FLOODING BASED ON
CURRENT FORECASTS.

YOU SHOULD MONITOR LATER FORECASTS AND BE ALERT FOR POSSIBLE
FLOOD WARNINGS. THOSE LIVING IN AREAS PRONE TO FLOODING SHOULD BE
PREPARED TO TAKE ACTION SHOULD FLOODING DEVELOP.





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