Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

May 9, 2013

High water receding as rain ends, but another rain event is expected on Friday

PEARISBURG, Va. — The rains came again in Four Seasons Country on Wednesday, but most of the regional stream banks held the increased flow.

“We’re still at about 9.5 feet at Glen Lyn, Va.,” Chris McKlarney said. “That’s still about three feet below alert stage. Several of our creeks are up, but most are still in their banks,” McKlarney said. McKlarney is a Giles County, Va., administrator. “We’ve had some good rains and we have had some high flow rates on Walkers Creek and Wolf Creek, but I believe we peaked out earlier (Wednesday).”

“Rain, rain, go away,” Robert Farley said as he entered the Mercer County Convention & Visitors Bureau Wednesday afternoon. The CVB hosted an open house on Wednesday in celebration of National Tourism week. “We could do without some of this rain.”

According to the National Weather Service office in Blacksburg, Va., the good news is that the rain should clear out today. However, another system, which is likely to bring even more rain to the counties of southern West Virginia, is likely to arrive at mid-day on Friday, and bring as much as an inch or an inch and one-half of rain to the Bluefield area before the system moves out of the region sometime on Saturday.

“This system will be coming from the west, so the counties in southern West Virginia will probably get more rain than the Virginia counties,” Robert Beasley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in Blacksburg said. “Everything is just totally saturated. If you get that much rain in a six-hour period, the potential for flooding is very high.”

“We don’t usually issue flood watches this far in advance of the arrival of a system, but check back (on Thursday) to see what it looks like then,” Beasley said. “We should have a pretty decent day (today), but we’ll have rain on Friday and colder temperatures during the weekend that could possibly end up with some freeze warnings in northern West Virginia.”

Late Wednesday, Beasley said that Alderson and Pipestem were both at the “action stage” in terms of flood watches. He said that in addition to the higher rainfall totals in Greenbrier County, there was a release of 42,000 cubic feet per second of water from Claytor Dam in Pulaski, Va., that added to the volume of water. “That additional water merged with the rain at the Bluestone Dam,” Beasley said.

— Contact Bill Archer at barcher@bdtonline.com

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