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Remnants of Harvey expected to have ‘minimal impact’ on WV


Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Six days after blowing across the Texas coast from the Gulf of Mexico and dumping record-shattering rainfall as it moved inland, stalled and recirculated, Harvey was moving up the Ohio River Valley on Thursday, but expected to be only a shadow of its former self by the time it arrives in West Virginia early Friday and lingers through late Saturday.

“At the moment, we do not expect any significant or widespread flooding to occur,” the National Weather Service’s Charleston Forecast Office announced on Thursday. “We still have to monitor how this event evolves, but it’s looking like this will have minimal impact to our area with a couple of soggy days.”

While Harvey inundated parts of southeast Texas with more than four feet of rainfall, the fading storm is expected to drop less than two inches of rain on West Virginia before sweeping eastward and exiting the state on Saturday night. A week of mostly dry weather across the state before the storm’s arrival should enable the soil to absorb most of the expected rainfall, according to the NWS. Even so, there is a small chance localized flash flooding could occur following extended periods of rain, according to the weather service. Rainfall is expected to be heaviest on Friday and Friday night.

Rainfall amounts are expected to be highest in counties abutting the Ohio River, from Wayne northward to Wood, where storm totals of up to 1.75 inches were considered possible. Rainfall totals from the storm were expected to be no more than 1.25 inches in the Charleston area, 1 inch or less in the state’s eastern mountains, and .75 inches or less in the state’s Northern and Eastern Panhandles.

Some southern counties could be visited by the first waves of the tropical depression as early as Thursday night, but are expected to receive weekend rainfall totals of one inch or less, according to the NWS.

Sunny skies and warm temperatures are in the forecast for the remainder of the Labor Day Weekend. In the Charleston area, Sunday’s temperatures are expected to be in the high 70s, and rise into the mid-80s on Monday.

Reach Rick Steelhammer at [email protected], 304-348-5169 or follow @rsteelhammer on Twitter.

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