Friday, January 20, 2012

Storm Parade Starts with Possible Freezing Rain Tonight

This very active weather pattern will continue for the next several days. We'll have just about all forms of severe weather. Clark County residents should keep tabs on weather, river, and travel conditions and take precautions. Here's the rundown:

  • Most urgently, there is a Freezing Rain Advisory for areas to the east of I-205 in East Clark County. An ice storm is underway in the Gorge. Forecasters are watching strong, cold east winds push freezing rain father west than was originally forecasted. The freezing rain may get to Camas and Washougal and possibly as far as I-205, starting in the early evening and ending around midnight.

  • Another storm front will enter the region tonight bringing another .5 to 1" of rain to the inland valleys. No Clark County rivers are expected to reach flood stage at this point.

  • There is a Wind Advisory in effect from 10 PM tonight through 10 AM tomorrow. Winds 25-35 MPH, with gusts to 40-45. Strongest winds will occur from midnight to 8 AM. This is of particular concern because of the rain saturated soils. Trees may be more likely to break or fall, blocking roads and cutting powerlines.

  • Another storm system will come to the region on Sunday that will be similar to tonight's storm.

  • The good news is that in the short term we don't expect any rivers in Clark County to rise to a level of concern.

Longer term, we're keeping an eye on another heavy rain storm around Tuesday and Wednesday next week. As it stands now, forecasters predict this may be similar to the rain storm we had on Wednesday and Thursday this week. This may bring another 1.5 - 3" of rain in the inland valleys.

Helpful Hints

  • Be very careful if you are travelling in the East County area tonight. If you have travel plans that take you east on SR-14 or Hwy 84, you should reconsider.

  • Be on the lookout for falling trees and exposed powerlines later tonight. To report a power outage in Clark County call Clark Public Utilities at (360) 992-8000.

  • Also be on the lookout for landslides and other debris flows. These extended periods of heavy rain and snowmelt can often result in landslides.

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