Flood Potential Outlook
Issued by NWS Wakefield, VA

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WINTER/SPRING FLOOD POTENTIAL OUTLOOK
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WAKEFIELD VA
320 PM EDT THU MAR 17 2016

...SIXTH WINTER/SPRING FLOOD OUTLOOK FOR 2016...

...RIVER FLOOD POTENTIAL IS NEAR NORMAL THROUGH MARCH...

EACH WINTER AND EARLY SPRING...THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
OFFICE IN WAKEFIELD VA ISSUES A SERIES OF FLOOD POTENTIAL
OUTLOOKS. THESE OUTLOOKS ESTIMATE THE POTENTIAL FOR RIVER
FLOODING ACROSS THE WAKEFIELD FORECAST OFFICE`S HYDROLOGIC
SERVICE AREA (HSA). THE HSA INCLUDES CENTRAL AND EASTERN
VIRGINIA...THE LOWER MARYLAND EASTERN SHORE...AND PORTIONS OF
NORTHEAST NORTH CAROLINA. THE OUTLOOK IS BASED ON THE CURRENT
ASSESSMENT OF HYDROMETEOROLOGICAL FACTORS WHICH CONTRIBUTE TO
RIVER FLOODING. THESE FACTORS INCLUDE...BUT ARE NOT LIMITED
TOO...RECENT PRECIPITATION...SOIL MOISTURE...SNOW COVER AND SNOW
WATER EQUIVALENT...STREAM FLOWS...RIVER ICE AND EXPECTED FUTURE
WEATHER CONDITIONS.

IN THIS PART OF THE MID-ATLANTIC REGION...HEAVY RAINFALL IS THE
PRIMARY FACTOR THAT LEADS TO RIVER FLOODING. HEAVY RAINFALL CAN
RAPIDLY CAUSE RIVER FLOODING AT ANYTIME OF THE YEAR...EVEN WHEN
OVERALL RIVER FLOOD POTENTIAL IS CONSIDERED LOW.

THE FOLLOWING IS A SUMMARY OF THE CURRENT CONDITIONS AS OF
THURSDAY MARCH 3 2016:

CURRENT FLOODING - NO RIVERS ARE CURRENTLY IN FLOOD AS OF 3 PM
THURSDAY MARCH 17 2016.

RECENT PRECIPITATION - OVER THE LAST 30 DAYS...FROM FEBRUARY 16
-MARCH 16 2016...RAINFALL TOTALS ACROSS THE HSA HAVE RANGED FROM
TWO - TO FIVE INCHES ACROSS THE HSA....WITH LOCALIZED HIGHER
TOTALS AROUND SIX TO SEVEN INCHES ACROSS PORTIONS OF THE EASTERN
VIRGINIA PIEDMONT. THESE TOTALS RANGE FROM NEAR NORMAL TO AS MUCH
AS 4 INCHES ABOVE NORMAL.

LOOKING AT PRECIPITATION TOTALS AT LONGER TIME STEPS...THE 60
DAYTIME STEP...FROM JANUARY 17 TO MARCH 17...SHOWS PRECIPITATION
TOTALS RANGED FROM FOUR TO TEN INCHES...WHICH RANKS FROM NEAR
NORMAL TO UP TO AROUND FOUR INCHES ABOVE NORMAL. AT 90
DAYS...DECEMBER 17 TO MARCH 17...THE SURPLUS WAS AS MUCH AS FIVE
INCHES WITH RAINFALL TOTALS BETWEEN EIGHT AND FIFTEEN INCHES BEING
REPORTED.

DESPITE SOME DRYING OVER THE PAST TEN DAYS...WITH ALL OF
THE RAINFALL THAT THE REGION HAS SEEN...THE US DROUGHT
MONITOR CONTINUES TO SHOW NO MENTION OF DRYNESS OR DROUGHT ACROSS
THE WAKEFIELD HSA. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ON THE US DROUGHT
MONITOR OR OTHER DROUGHT INFORMATION...PLEASE VISIT:

HTTP://DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU/

SNOW CONDITIONS - THERE IS CURRENTLY...AS OF 3 PM MARCH 17...NO
SNOW ON THE GROUND ACROSS THE HSA.

RIVER ICE CONDITIONS - THERE IS CURRENTLY NO ICING...AS OF 3 PM
MARCH 17...ON AREA RIVERS ACROSS THE HSA.

STREAM FLOW CONDITIONS - THE 14 DAY AVERAGE STREAM
FLOWS...THROUGH MARCH 17TH...WERE MAINLY IN THE NORMAL TO ABOVE
NORMAL RANGE ACROSS THE HSA.

WHEN LOOKING AT THE REAL TIME FLOWS AS OF 3 PM ON MARCH
17TH...THE RIVER LEVELS RIVER LEVELS ARE MAINLY IN THE NORMAL
RANGE FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR. RIVER LEVELS CONTINUE TO TREND TOWARD
MORE NORMAL LEVELS. HERE ARE SOME REAL TIME STREAM FLOWS AS OF 3 PM
MARCH 17TH:

LOCATION OBSERVED LEVEL/MEDIAN FLOW/PERCENTAGE OF MEDIAN
RIVANNA RIVER
PALMYRA VA  860 CFS/ 983 CFS/ 87.5
JAMES RIVER
CARTERSVILLE VA    6252 CFS/7844 CFS/ 79.7
RICHMOND VA   11700 CFS/   M  /M
APPOMATTOX RIVER
MATTOAX VA     611 CFS/1041 CFS/ 58.7
    MATOACA VA    1076 CFS/ 1566 CFS/ 68.7
NOTTOWAY RIVER
RAWLINGS VA 275 CFS/ 415 CFS/ 66.3
STONY CREEK VA     516 CFS/ 818 CFS/ 63.1
SEBRELLVA1638 CFS/ 2158 CFS/  75.9
MEHERRIN RIVER
    LAWRENCEVILLE VA 533 CFS/ 743 CFS/ 71.7
EMPORIA VA 681 CFS/1003 CFS/ 67.9
BLACKWATER RIVER
FRANKLIN VA 958 CFS/ 992 CFS/ 96.6
MATTAPONI RIVER
BOWLING GREEN VA 203 CFS/ 402 CFS/ 50.5
BEULAHVILLE VA 629 CFS/  849 CFS/ 74.1
POCOMOKE RIVER
WILLARDS MD  70 CFS/ 106 CFS/ 65.9
POTECASI CREEK
    UNION NC                 245 CFS/    399 CFS/    61.4

SOIL MOISTURE CONDITIONS - NEAR NORMAL TO ABOVE NORMAL.

SOIL MOISTURE INDICATORS INCLUDING THE PALMER DROUGHT
SEVERITY INDEX...WHICH IS USED TO INFER DEEP SOIL
MOISTURE...SHOWS THAT AS OF MARCH 12TH...THE LOWER MARYLAND
EASTERN SHORE...CENTRAL AND EASTERN VIRGINIA AND NORTHEASTERN
NORTH CAROLINA THE DEEP SOIL MOISTURE IS DEPICTED AS BEING NEAR
NORMAL.

THE CPC SOIL MOISTURE MONITOR...WHICH LOOKS MORE AT TOP SOIL
MOISTURE...SHOWS A MOISTURE SURPLUS OF 20 - 80 MM IS SHOWN WITH
THE HIGHEST VALUES ACROSS SOUTHERN VIRGINIA AND PORTIONS
NORTHEASTERN NORTH CAROLINA.

GROUND WATER - NEAR NORMAL TO ABOVE NORMAL LEVELS.

GROUND WATER LEVELS ACROSS THE HSA CONTINUE TO BE DEPICTED IN
THE NORMAL TO ABOVE NORMAL RANGE. GAGES CONTINUE TO SHOW THAT
WITH EACH PRECIPITATION EVENT THAT THE GROUND WATER RECHARGE
CONTINUES AS STRONG RISES IN WATER LEVELS ARE DEPICTED AT EACH
GAGE LOCATION.

RESERVOIRS - AVERAGE TO ABOVE NORMAL POOL LEVELS

WITH THE RAINFALL THAT HAS OCCURRED FROM THE FALL THROUGH THE
WINTER MONTHS...AREA RESERVOIRS POOL LEVELS RANGE FROM NORMAL TO
ABOVE NORMAL.

FUTURE PRECIPITATION...THE LATEST MEDIUM RANGE METEOROLOGICAL
MODELS INDICATE FAIRLY TYPICAL MARCH WEATHER FOR THE NEXT 2 WEEKS.
THIS TRANSLATES TO CONSIDERABLE VARIABILITY IN BOTH TEMPERATURES
AND PRECIPITATION...OR A NORMAL WEATHER PATTERN OVER THE NEXT TWO
WEEKS. STORM SYSTEMS ARE EXPECTED TO MOVE ACROSS THE REGION ONCE
OR TWICE A WEEK.

THE LATEST CPC 8 TO 14 DAY OUTLOOK IS INDICATING A WARMER AND
SLIGHTLY WETTER THAN THE NORMAL WET PATTERN FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR,
ESPECIALLY ALONG THE COASTAL PLAIN OF EASTERN VIRGINIA AND
NORTHEAST NORTH CAROLINA. THIS IS BASED ON CPC CLIMATE MODEL
FORECASTS AND THE CURRENT EL NINO ADVISORY.

WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

THE SERFC ISSUES A VARIETY OF PRODUCTS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR TO UPDATE
THE OUTLOOK FOR WATER RESOURCES.  THE SERFC WATER RESOURCES OUTLOOK
IS UPDATED EVERY MONTH.

LASTLY FOR THE 3 MONTH OUTLOOK FOR APRIL THROUGH JUNE...
PRECIPITATION HAS HIGHER CHANCE TO BE ABOVE NORMAL FOR THE 3
MONTH PERIOD, ESPECIALLY ACROSS THE SOUTHERN HALF OF THE
AREA...WITH TEMPERATURES ALSO HAVING A HIGHER CHANCE TO BE ABOVE
NORMAL.

THE RIVER FLOOD POTENTIAL OUTLOOK THROUGH MARCH 24 2016 ACROSS
THE WAKEFIELD HSA IS NORMAL TO ABOVE NORMAL. AGAIN REMEMBER THAT
HEAVY RAINFALL IS THE MOST COMMON CAUSE OF RIVER FLOODING IN THE
MID-ATLANTIC STATES. HOWEVER RIVER FLOODING CAN BE EXACERBATED
WHEN HEAVY RAIN IS COMBINED WITH SNOWMELT.

THIS PRODUCT REPRESENTS THE FINAL UPDATE OF THE WINTER/SPRING
FLOOD OUTLOOK FOR THE SPRING SEASON...UNLESS CONDITIONS WARRANT
AN ADDITIONAL UPDATE. OTHERWISE, THE NEXT OUTLOOK WILL BE ISSUED
IN EARLY JANUARY 2017.

FOR ADDITIONAL WEATHER OR HYDROLOGIC INFORMATION...VISIT OUR
WEBSITE AT WWW.WEATHER.GOV/AKQ.

$$

NWS WAKEFIELD



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