Severe Thunderstorms Expected This Weekend; Heavy Rain and Flooding are Possible

Posted at 10 a.m.

The National Weather Service (NWS) has advised county officials that we can likely expect severe thunderstorms and weather this weekend — most likely in the afternoon and evening hours.

According to the NWS forecast, the county is likely to receive ½ inch to ¾ inch of rain within a one hour period and 2 to 3 inches in a six hour period.

NWS also notes that it is possible, especially on Sunday, that we could receive a maximum rainfall of 2½ inches in a one hour period and 4 inches in a six hour period in localized areas. These higher rainfall totals are expected to be localized and associated with small thunderstorm cells.

We can also expect tidal anomalies of about 1 foot to 1½ foot higher than normal.

Precautions

Residents in areas prone to street flooding may want to take precautions and move vehicles to higher elevations. Don’t park in restricted areas and try to avoid parking under trees when possible.

Move any valuables from the basement, especially if your basement has flooded before.

With all high-intensity rainfall, street flooding is possible. If there is any possibility of a flash flood:

  • Move immediately to higher ground.
  • Do not wait for instructions to move.
  • Be aware of streams, drainage channels and other areas known to flood suddenly.
  • Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without such typical warnings as rain clouds or heavy rain.

And please remember to keep children away from creeks and their potentially rapidly rising waters.

You also may want to check storm drains and gutters to ensure that they are not clogged. Blocked stormdrains prevent the flow of rain from reaching streams and stormwater detention ponds. The water then backs up into streets and yards and may flood basements. Blocked stormdrains also may damage residential and commercial property and cause traffic delays.

Keep the openings of storm drains clear of debris to help alleviate potential flooding and to protect the environment. At no time, however, should you attempt to enter a storm drain to remove debris.

Property owners are responsible for driveway culverts and bridges that are part of the driveway structure and are not public storm drainage system structures. Storm drains outside rights-of-way and easements are privately maintained by the property owner.

To report a blocked storm drain, call Fairfax County Stormwater Management, 703-877-2800, TTY 711, or the Virginia Department of Transportation at 703-383-8368, TTY 711.

Additional Information

Public safety, public works and emergency management staff will continue to monitor the storm throughout the weekend, along with conditions on the ground, and will send emergency alerts if the situation changes. You can sign up for these alerts, along with severe weather alerts, from Fairfax Alerts at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/alerts.

The complete forecast can be found online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/emergency/weather-forecast.htm.

Flooding FAQ’s – www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpwes/navbar/faqs/flooding.htm

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About Fairfax County Emergency Information

Official emergency information about preparedness, response and recovery from Fairfax County Government.