Crispy lawns, thirsty flowers and parched gardens got all the water they could handle over the last few days. Rain gauges returning a nearly 5" deficit for the year, almost returned to the annual norm in just a few hours on Friday.
Showers and thunderstorms that began in the morning were heavy for sections of Iberville, Pointe Coupee and West Feliciana Parishes, along with Wilkinson and Amite Counties. A rouge thunderstorm ahead of the heavier line even produced some wind damage in Saint Amant (in the attached picture). By afternoon, the corridor of heavy rain crawled eastward into the Baton Rouge Metropolitan area and dampened Livingston and Ascension Parishes as well. The LSU and Alabama baseball game was washed out due to the persistent storms. Areal flood warnings were issued as small streams bulged and water ponded in areas with poor drainage. Many roadways were puddled with inches of water (see attached picture of Coursey Boulevard). During the later evening hours, flooding rains pummeled New Orleans, leaving many streets with knee deep water. The official tally from the Baton Rouge Airport was 3.27" followed by an additional 0.19" early Saturday. On Sunday, a returning batch of rain and storms issued the bucket 0.87" more.
With three days of saturation, rain gauges now have 20.35" for the year, adjusting the deficit from nearly 5" to under an inch. The soaking rains came immediately on the heels of the second longest dry stretch for Baton Rouge in 2014. From May 2 -8, no rainfall was recorded for the Baton Rouge metro area, or anywhere else across the region. The longest rain-free period of the year came from January 14 - 22, 9 days without any liquid in the gauges. Dry stretch long gone and precipitation deficit nearly kaput, the days to come may leave the Red Stick with a rain surplus by mid-week!
Pop-up showers and thunderstorms are expected once again on Monday and Tuesday Afternoons. With ample moisture in the air, the more vigorous storms could be efficient rainmakers. By late Tuesday, a cold front will arrive in Southern Louisiana. This same front is pegged to drop a widespread swath of 4"+ rainfall totals in portions of Central Texas. As the front slowly crosses the local area, there will be a window of opportunity for showers and thunderstorms to "train" across the forecast area potentially leading to more areal flooding and a few additional inches of rain. Current forecasts from the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center sketch the forecast area in a 1-2" three day rainfall total through Wednesday (attached graphic). However with a juicy air mass in place, this situation certainly needs to be eyed for locally higher amounts.
On Thursday, Southeastern Louisiana will transition right back over to the other end of the spectrum with low humidity and dry conditions expected Thursday through the weekend.
You can get forecasts from Meteorologist Josh Eachus weekdays on 2une-In from 5-7am and News 2 at Noon from 12-1pm. Additionally, you can get the fastest and latest forecasts and weather news by checking in with wbrz.com/weather, liking Josh on Facebook and following him on Twitter.
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