First wave of rain weakens, exits area; more storms possible later tonight.

Weather

Radar indicates that localized downpours that moved across the area late this morning and this afternoon have shifted east and shown a decrease in intensity. A new cluster of storms is developing to our west, over eastern Nebraska and western Iowa, and is forecast to move across central, and portions of northern Illinois later tonight.

Rainfall from today’s opening round of showers and t-storms varied widely. Here are a few reports:

Essex (Kankakee county) 2.00″, Oak Forest .77″, O’Hare airport .51″, west Joliet .20″ Midway airport .07″

Future rounds of storms are expected to bring additional heavy downpours to the area over the next 3 days. Currently, forecasts suggest rainfall totals from 7 PM Thursday to 7 PM Sunday may range from 3″ over northern portions of the metro area to over 5 ” in the south. However, these totals are only estimates and actual amounts can vary widely as evidenced this afternoon.

Forecast rainfall totals through Sunday.

It still appears that heavier rains tonight through Friday will focus on areas generally south of I-80 prompting the National Weather Service to issue a Flash Flood Watch for this region.

Region shaded in green represents Flash Flood Watch area.
The National Weather Service in Chicago has issued a

* Flash Flood Watch for portions of Illinois and northwest Indiana,
  including the following areas, in Illinois, Ford, Grundy,
  Iroquois, Kankakee, La Salle, Livingston and Southern Will. In
  northwest Indiana, Benton, Jasper and Newton.

* From 7 PM CDT /8 PM EDT/ this evening through Saturday morning

* Several rounds of thunderstorms are expected tonight through early
  Saturday morning. Flash flooding will be possible as heavy rain
  producing storms move repeatedly over the same location.

* Excessive runoff may result in flooding of rivers, streams and
  other low-lying and flood-prone areas.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A Flash Flood Watch means rapid-onset flooding is possible, but not
yet certain, based upon the latest forecasts. Flash flooding is a
dangerous situation. Persons with interests along area rivers,
creeks, and other waterways should monitor the latest forecasts and
be prepared to take action should flooding develop.

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