Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Central Montana flooding stabilizing despite rain

After more than a week of seemingly endless rain and constant flooding there appears to be a slight reprieve — if only for two days.

"We were hoping it was going to warm up for the rest of the week," said Jonathan Suk, meteorologist with the National Weather Service. "Unfortunately we have another storm system moving in.

Some sunshine is expected today, but Suk said that on Wednesday temperatures could reach 70 degrees before dipping back into the 60s, with a chance of precipitation on Thursday.

"Maybe next weekend we'll have some more sun," he said. "But I wouldn't be putting all our chips in on that one."

Suk reported on Monday afternoon that in the past 24 hours more than a half-inch of rain had fallen in places such as Lewistown, and close to 0.4 inches accumulated in Havre. But at some missile silo sites in Judith Basin County, there were reports of almost an inch of rain.

In Great Falls, there was 0.8 inches of rain in the past 24 hours.

At Gibson Dam almost an inch of rain fell, but there was no flooding to report.

Suk said the rainfall totals on Monday afternoon were what they had expected, if not a little less than anticipated.

Snowfall of up to 7 inches was reported in the Little Belt Mountains, and Suk said there were reports of 15 inches of snowfall on the mountain peaks near the southern Montana-Idaho border.

Closer to home, Fergus County Emergency Management Coordinator Cheri Kilby said there were no new damage reports as of Monday afternoon.


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