Flood watch issued for Southwest Washington

LONG BEACH — A flood watch will be in effect for Pacific County and much of the rest of Southwest Washington from Friday evening through Saturday evening, the National Weather Service in Portland advises.

The first atmospheric river event of the season will produce heavy rain over Southwest Washington Friday and Saturday. The first period of heavy rain is expected during the day Friday into this evening. The axis of heavier rain is then forecasted to push north of the region overnight, before moving back south again during the day Saturday. The highest rainfall totals will be over the higher terrain of the Willapa Hills and Cascades, where 4 to 8 inches of storm total rainfall are expected. Localized areas may see up to 10 inches.

With this being the first major rain event of the season, river levels are starting off relatively low. However, significant increases are likely on the some of the smaller and faster responding rivers. There is potential for minor flooding, including on the Grays River in Wahkiakum County. In addition, there is potential for flooding on some smaller creeks and streams and poorly draining urban areas.

A flood watch means there is a potential for flooding based on current forecasts.

Landslides and debris flows are possible during this flood event. People, structures and roads located below steep slopes, in canyons and near the mouths of canyons may be at serious risk from rapidly moving landslides.

You should monitor later forecasts and be alert for possible flood warnings. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action should flooding develop.

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