Flood Potential Outlook
Issued by NWS Boston, MA

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FGUS71 KBOX 151623

Winter/Spring Flood Potential Outlook
National Weather Service TAUNTON MA
1223 PM EDT Thu Mar 15 2018

...Winter/Spring Flood Potential is above to much above normal
across RI and eastern MA...
...Winter/Spring Flood Potential is normal to above normal across
central and western MA, and northern CT...

The flood potential is above to much above normal across eastern MA
and RI. The flood potential is normal to above normal across
central and western MA, and northern CT.

The flood threat from ice jams is over for the season.

The following web site has a map depicting the freshwater flood
potential outlook...

This is the seventh winter/spring flood potential outlook of the
2018 season. This outlook is based on current and forecast
hydrometeorological conditions. This includes snow cover and snow
water equivalent, stream and river levels and the amount of ice
coverage, recent precipitation and temperatures, and expected
temperatures and precipitation over the next two weeks.

...Recent Precipitation and Temperatures...

During the 2 week period from March 1 to March 14, southern New
England was hit with 3 coastal storms. These storms brought a
multitude of weather hazards to the region, including heavy rain,
freshwater and coastal flooding, damaging winds, heavy snowfall and
even blizzard conditions. Liquid equivalent precipitation over the
past 2 weeks ranged from 2.5 to 3.5 inches across north central CT
and western MA, which was 0.5 to 1.5 inch above normal. Across
central and eastern MA, and into RI, higher liquid equivalent
precipitation of 3.5 to 7 inches occurred, which was 1.5 to 5 inches
above normal.

Temperatures averaged 2 to 4 degrees above normal.

...Observed snow depths and water equivalents...

Recent coastal storms have produced a snow pack that is above
normal in coverage and extent for mid-March. Snow depth across RI
and southeast MA ranged from 5 to 12 inches, with pockets of
lower snow depths up to a few inches. The water content in this
snow pack ranged from 1 to 2.5 inches.

Snow depth across central and northeast MA, as well as northeast CT,
generally ranged from 10 to 20 inches. There were locally deeper
snow packs of around 25 inches, including Lowell and Reading.
There were also some locally less deep snow packs of 5 to 10
inches. Water content of the snowpack ranged from 1 to 2.5 inches.

Along the east slopes of the Berkshires, snow depth ranged from
15 to 25 inches with local depths up to 30 inches. Water content
was 3 to 5 inches. In contrast, the floor of the Connecticut River
Valley in MA and CT had much less snow pack, with depths ranging
from 1 to 4 inches. Water content there was under an inch.

...River and Ice Conditions...

Rivers and streams were running mainly near normal levels, except
above normal across much of RI and southeast MA.

Little river ice was left on area rivers and streams. During mid to
late March the increasing sun angle will prevent much if any
additional river ice from forming. Thus the flood threat due to
ice jams is over for the season.

...Soil Moisture Conditions...

Soil moisture was above to much above normal. Looking at the Palmer
Drought Severity Index, conditions as of March 10th ranged from an
unusual moist spell across much of southern New England, to
extremely moist along east coastal MA. The ground was mainly thawed.

...Temperature and Precipitation Outlook...

Temperatures are expected to average several degrees below normal
over the course of the next 7 days.

Mainly dry conditions are forecast from today thru next Monday. Then
there is the potential for another coastal storm towards the middle
of next week. It is difficult to discern at this point what the
exact precipitation type will be across the region- there is a
chance for both snow and rain if this system materializes and
brings precipitation to southern New England.

Another coastal storm will probably add to the spring flood threat.
If the event were rainy, freshwater flooding may be possible. If the
storm brought more snow, it would add to what is now a late season
snowpack, which could also add to the longer term spring flood

The week 2 outlook from the Climate Prediction Center, for March 22-
28, calls for below normal temperatures and normal to above normal


The freshwater flood potential is above to much above normal across
eastern MA and RI. Across central and western MA into northern CT,
the freshwater flood potential is normal to above normal.

Rivers across RI and eastern MA were still running above normal for
this time of year.  In this area prolonged minor flooding occurred
on the Pawcatuck and Taunton Rivers. Precipitation over the past 2
weeks has been anomalously high. The snow pack and soil moisture
are both above normal. There is the potential for another coastal
storm next week. CPC`s week 2 outlook indicates the more active
weather pattern may continue. This area is currently more
vulnerable to flooding because of these factors.

Across central and western MA and into northern CT, rivers and
streams had settled into normal levels. However the snow pack and
soil moisture were both above normal. Taking into consideration the
possibility of another coastal storm and a possible continuation of
an active weather pattern into late March, this area has a near
normal to above normal flood potential.

Keep in mind that heavy rain can cause flooding any time of the
year. Those with interests along rivers and streams should check the
Hazardous Weather Outlook, which highlights any potential flood
events over the next 7 days. Go to https://weather.gov/boston and
click on the option Current Hazards, then click on Local Outlook.


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