Flood Potential Outlook
Issued by NWS Buffalo, NY

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WINTER/SPRING FLOOD POTENTIAL OUTLOOK
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BUFFALO NY
1125 AM EST THU FEB 4 2016

...FLOOD RISK IS MUCH BELOW NORMAL...

THIS IS THE THIRD WINTER / SPRING FLOOD POTENTIAL OUTLOOK OF THE
2016 SEASON. FLOOD OUTLOOKS WILL BE ISSUED EVERY TWO WEEKS INTO
EARLY SPRING TO SUMMARIZE BASIN HYDROMETEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS AND
TO ASSESS THE POTENTIAL FOR FLOODING. THE OUTLOOKS ARE BASED ON
CURRENT AND FORECAST HYDROMETEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS. THIS INCLUDES
SNOW COVER AND WATER EQUIVALENT...CREEK AND RIVER LEVELS AND THE
AMOUNT OF ICE COVER ON THEM...ALONG WITH THE EXPECTED PRECIPITATION
OVER THE NEXT TWO WEEKS.

...CURRENT CONDITIONS SUMMARY...

TEMPERATURES RETURNED TO NEAR NORMAL FOR MOST OF JANUARY WHICH
STARTED TO ESTABLISH A SNOW PACK. HOWEVER...FEBRUARY STARTED OFF
UNSEASONABLY WARM TEMPERATURES WITH TWO ROUNDS OF RECORD SETTING
WARMTH. THIS MELTED NEARLY ALL THE SNOW PACK SOUTH OF LAKE
ONTARIO...AND PUT A SIGNIFICANT DENT IN SNOW PACK IN THE BLACK
RIVER BASIN.

THE COMBINATION OF RAIN AND WARM TEMPERATURES CAUSED WITH-IN BANK
RISES WHICH FLUSHED OUT NEARLY ALL THE ICE ON THE SMALLER CREEKS.
SOME ICE REMAINS IN THE BLACK RIVER BASIN...OTHERWISE IT IS
ESSENTIALLY A CLEAN START TO THE SEASON. THIS LEAVES SNOW WATER
EQUIVALENT VALUES WELL BELOW NORMAL.

THE FOLLOWING IS A SUMMARY OF CONDITIONS AND OUTLOOK BY BASIN AS OF
THURSDAY MORNING ON FEBRUARY 4TH:

...BUFFALO AREA CREEKS / LAKE ERIE BASIN...
.SNOW COVER..........NONE.
.WATER EQUIVALENT....NONE.
.CREEK FLOWS.........MUCH ABOVE NORMAL.
.CREEK ICE...........LITTLE TO NONE.
.GROUND FROST........NONE.
.GROUND STATE........SATURATED.

...GENESEE RIVER BASIN / FINGER LAKES / ROCHESTER AREA...
.SNOW COVER..........NONE.
.WATER EQUIVALENT....NONE.
.RIVER/CREEK FLOWS...ABOVE NORMAL.
.RIVER/CREEK ICE.....NONE.
.GROUND FROST........NONE.
.GROUND STATE........SATURATED.

...ALLEGHENY RIVER BASIN...
.SNOW COVER..........NONE.
.WATER EQUIVALENT....NONE.
.RIVER/CREEK FLOWS...ABOVE NORMAL.
.RIVER CREEK ICE.....NONE.
.GROUND FROST........NONE.
.GROUND STATE........SATURATED.

...BLACK RIVER BASINS / TUG HILL...
.SNOW COVER..........NONE...EXCEPT 2 TO 4 INCHES ACROSS HIGHER
TERRAIN.
.WATER EQUIVALENT....NONE...UP TO 2 INCHES ACROSS HIGHER TERRAIN.
.RIVER/CREEK FLOWS...ABOVE NORMAL.
.RIVER/CREEK ICE.....VARIABLE...SOME ICE FLOWING.
.GROUND FROST........MOSTLY THAWED.
.GROUND STATE........SATURATED.

...TEMPERATURE AND PRECIPITATION OUTLOOK...

SEASONABLY COOL TEMPERATURES WILL RETURN THROUGH THIS WEEKEND WITH
A ZONAL FLOW EXPECTED TO LAST INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK. THIS PATTERN
TENDS TO BRING FAST MOVING...BUT WEAK SYSTEMS...WITH TEMPERATURES
COLD ENOUGH FOR PRIMARILY SNOW. AFTER THIS...A TROUGH IS FORECAST
TO DEVELOP ACROSS THE NORTHEASTERN STATES NEXT WEEK. THIS WILL
BRING NEAR TO SLIGHTLY BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES...WHICH WILL
MAINLY BE BELOW FREEZING THIS TIME OF YEAR. WITH THE LAKES
PRIMARILY ICE-FREE THIS WILL BRING GOOD CHANCE FOR SOME LAKE
EFFECT SNOW...HOWEVER SPECIFICS DEPEND ON THE EXACT TRACK AND
STRENGTH OF ANY SYSTEMS.

THE 8 TO 14 DAY OUTLOOK FORECASTS BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES AND NEAR
NORMAL PRECIPITATION. THIS IS CONSISTENT WITH THE LATEST LONG
RANGE MODEL GUIDANCE AND SUGGEST A CONTINUATION OF THIS PATTERN
INTO MID-FEBRUARY. THIS PATTERN WILL PROBABLY ADD TO SNOW
PACK...AND IS VERY UNLIKELY TO PRODUCE A MAJOR RAIN PRODUCING
SYSTEM.

...FLOOD POTENTIAL OUTLOOK...

FLOOD RISK IS MUCH BELOW NORMAL.

CURRENT FLOWS ARE ABOVE NORMAL...BUT STILL BELOW FLOOD STAGE. THE
BUFFALO CREEKS HAVE ALREADY CRESTED AND WILL CONTINUE TO DROP
THROUGH FRIDAY. THE BLACK RIVER WILL RESPOND TO YESTERDAYS
RAINFALL AND SNOW MELT THROUGH FRIDAY...BUT AT THIS TIME NO
FLOODING IS EXPECTED. PLEASE REFER TO THE LATEST RIVER
FORECASTS FOR THE LATEST INFORMATION.

OUTSIDE OF THE CURRENT HIGH FLOWS THERE IS HARDLY ANY SNOW OR
CREEK ICE SOUTH OF LAKE ONTARIO AND WATER EQUIVALENT VALUES ARE
WELL BELOW NORMAL ON THE BLACK RIVER BASIN. IN ADDITION...THE
FORECAST WEATHER PATTERN IS LIKELY TO PRODUCE PRIMARILY SNOW DUE
TO THE NEAR TO BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES. THIS PATTERN IS
UNLIKELY TO PRODUCE A SYSTEM WITH HEAVY RAINFALL.

TAKING THESE FACTORS INTO ACCOUNT...THE POTENTIAL FOR FLOODING IS
WELL BELOW NORMAL FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR. THIS SAID...THERE IS
ALWAYS INHERENT UNCERTAINTY IN FORECASTING...ESPECIALLY FURTHER
OUT IN TIME.

...ADDITIONAL INFORMATION...

REAL TIME RIVER INFORMATION AND PROBABILISTIC FORECASTS FOR SPECIFIC
LOCATIONS ALONG RIVERS ACROSS WESTERN NEW YORK CAN BE FOUND ON THE
INTERNET AT WWW.WEATHER.GOV/BUF BY CLICKING ON THE RIVERS AND LAKES
AHPS LINK ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE PAGE. SINCE CONDITIONS CAN CHANGE
PLEASE REFER TO THE LATEST FLOOD WARNINGS...WATCHES...AND STATEMENTS
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION.

THANKS TO ALL THE OBSERVERS AND AGENCIES WHICH HAVE HELPED GATHER
DATA IN SUPPORT OF THIS OUTLOOK. THE NEXT WINTER/SPRING FLOOD
OUTLOOK WILL BE ISSUED ON FEBRUARY 18TH.

$$

APFFEL



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