The Woodlands area is expected to receive periods of heavy rainfall throughout the day, Thursday, June 2, 2016, and possibly more through Sunday according to local emergency management officials.
The Woodlands Township Emergency Management Officials, along with Montgomery and Harris County, expect roadways to flood, causing some areas of the roads to be impassable.
“We encourage residents not to drive in these conditions,” said The Woodlands Fire Chief Alan B. Benson. “However, if you must, please use extreme caution and expect some areas to be impassable. The Woodlands Fire Department continues to monitor the situation very closely.”
Residents are encouraged to sign up for the Township’s emergency notification system (www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/notifyme) which is designed for major events that threaten citizens and reaches thousands of residents via text message and email, according to Township Chairman Dr. Ed Robb.
This morning, we have already seen about another 3 to 4 inches of rain and officials are watching two more systems to the west and south, as they move in a northeasterly direction. These systems are expected to impact The Woodlands in one fashion or another. Today’s totals will range from one inch and up, depending on your location in the county. Officials expect to see up to 2 inches per hour with rainfall totals of 6 inches. This means street flooding and street closures. Rivers and creeks are already at or near crest, and these will come out of their banks. After this system moves through, officials said the area should see another break overnight until tomorrow morning.
“Friday is expected to be much the same as today,” Chief Benson said. “There is a front moving down from the north, which will stall over our area. The exact location of the stall will greatly impact how much rain we see. Again, tomorrow’s totals could equal what we see today, with a slight difference of a faster rainfall rate. Again, flash street flooding will happen immediately, followed by our watersheds draining into already swollen rivers and creeks.”
Another point of great concern over the next two days is wind. These storms have been tracked moving at speeds greater than 25 mph. This means trees are at risk of falling due to ground saturation. They are good at winds less than 30 mph, but any winds greater than that will create additional issues. We can see wind gusts like we saw last week, with sustained winds at or near 25 mph.
Saturday should bring some relief, with scattered storms possible, according to officials. Then we should begin to see a clearing pattern, with dry and hot conditions next week. Next week we should see temps at 90+, which we haven’t seen to date.
The reasons for the unusual wet weather vary depending on what meteorologist you ask, however, bottom line is that our area is currently between to ridge patterns, which means it’s in a trough, which brings moisture and rains, according to emergency officials. The opposite happened in 2011, when The Woodlands and Montgomery County and Harris County experienced the drought. The area was under the ridge which meant dry hot conditions with no rain. The Pacific is active with the El Niño to La Niña transition and the Atlantic patterns have high pressures.
Current National Weather Service forecasts call for an additional 3-5 inches of rain with 8-12 inches possible in isolated areas.
The Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) is closely monitoring watershed in the area. At this time, HCFCD indicates that many creeks, bayous, and rivers may go out of banks with only moderate amounts of rainfall. Here is the watershed report as of 6:00 a.m.:
Cypress Creek: The creek rose overbanks overnight from Stuebner Airline downstream to the Spring Creek confluence and remains near bankfull or overbanks east of I-45 this morning. Additional heavy rain falling on the watershed currently will likely begin a new rise on the creek this morning.
West Fork of the San Jacinto River: The river has returned to major flood levels as runoff from Spring and Cypress Creeks moves downstream. Several subdivisions have become cutoff on both the north and south sides of the river.
Spring Creek: Creek is near bankfull at I-45 and slowly falling, but heavy rainfall across middle Spring Creek will likely result in additional rises this morning.The Woodlands Township is currently monitoring the potential for significant weather conditions in The Woodlands. The Township is providing a variety of ways for community members to stay informed on weather and traffic conditions as well as cancellations of Township events.
Residents are encouraged to sign up for the Township’s emergency notification system (www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/notifyme) which is designed for major events that threaten citizens and reaches thousands of residents via text message and email. Residents are also advised to monitor the following agency websites and social media channels to stay informed over the weekend:
Event Cancellations and Facility Closures
- Follow the Township’s various social media channels (www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/stayinformed) for current updates regarding the status of scheduled events and possible facility closures this weekend.
Emergency and Weather Conditions
- Monitor the Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management website (www.mctxoem.org) for important emergency conditions throughout Montgomery County.
- Monitor the Harris County Office of Emergency Management website (www.hcoem.org) for important emergency conditions throughout Harris County.
- Follow The National Weather Service Houston/Galveston TX on Twitter (@NWSHouston) for information regarding weather forecasts, watches and warnings.
- Monitor the Houston TransStar website (www.houstontranstar.org) for detailed reports of traffic conditions throughout the region.
- Follow Montgomery County Northstar on Twitter (@MCTXNorthstar) for live traffic information for Montgomery County Precinct 3.
Residents are reminded to take safety precautions when traveling to avoid driving into high water as water may be deeper than it appears and can hide many hazards. Residents should remove any objects outside the home that could float away and obstruct storm drains; this includes trash and recycling containers.
In the event of an emergency, please stay tuned to local television stations as well as K-Star Country, KVST 99.7 FM, the official emergency broadcast partner of The Woodlands Township.
For more information on The Woodlands Township, please call or visit www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov.