The drenching rains that plagued several states over the Memorial Day weekend canceled many holiday plans and celebrations. While many people who were left dealing with or worrying about flooding may think that the threat of rain is over, the fact is that more downpourings of rain are being forecast for this week for the Central Plains and Midwest. There is a risk for flash and urban flooding as rivers in that part of the country are nearing flood stage.
Heavy rains are going to fall into Tuesday night for most of Iowa, portions of Kansas, the eastern part of Nebraska, southern Wisconsin, central and northern Illinois and portions of lower Michigan. Over the holiday weekend, almost 10 inches of rain came down in some areas around San Antonio, TX and a similar scene has been unfolding in Iowa and other states.
Early on Memorial Day near Grinnell, IA, 7 inches of rain was recorded in just a 24-hour period of time. Run-off from that storm flooded many roads to make them impassable. In northern Iowa, two rivers – the Floyd and Little Sioux reached record highs Monday. There is moderate to major flooding forecast early this week for locations along the Mississippi River that borders Iowa, Illinois and Missouri.
Johnson County officials and meteorologists warned Monday that significant flash flooding could occur along the Iowa River Tuesday through the rest of the week. That is because Johnson County got 2 inches of rain from Sunday to Monday and there’s another 2 to 5 inches expected to fall Monday into Tuesday. Officials are warning that the event could be “memorable” and says that flash flooding is unavoidable due to too much rain falling in such a short period of time. The Iowa River at Marshalltown is being forecast to rise to 22 feet this week above the record set five years ago of 21.8 feet.
The National Weather Service said Tuesday morning that there are dangerous storms in the forecast from the Plains to Midwest for Tuesday. Some of these storms could be violent and can reach as far east as Ohio and lower Michigan. In all, over 50 million people in the United States will be at risk for severe thunderstorms including those living in major metro areas such as Chicago, Detroit, Kansas City, St. Louis, Cleveland and Pittsburgh.