Dear Tom,

The St. Louis area was just hit by more than a foot of rain. Could Chicago ever get that much?
Scott Johnson, Forest Park

Dear Scott,

Absolutely and it’s already happened. More rain than fell in St. Louis, hit the Chicago area on July 17-18,1996 affecting the entire region. Waves of thunderstorms repeatedly developed along a corridor from near Rockford to just north of Kankakee, bringing incredible amounts of precipitation, along with major flooding. Aurora was at the epicenter of the heaviest precipitation, logging 16.91 inches of rain in a 24-hour period, an Illinois record. Much of the metro area received more than 8 inches of rain. Brandon Dam near Joliet measured 13.60 inches, while nearly 11 inches fell on Chicago’s Southwest Side. Eight people died in the flood, and damage totaled more than a half-billion dollars.