More problems in the Plains
Torrential rains and flooding have hit parts of the nation’s heartland pretty hard this week. Unfortunately, the threat will linger for at least one more day as a cold front moves slowly through the region.
Periods of heavy rainfall and flash flooding today, October 2, and tonight will delay drivers in places from the Texas Panhandle all the way to Chicago, Illinois and Toledo, Ohio. The ground is already saturated and additional rainfall would lead to rapidly rising rivers, creeks and streams overflowing onto roads. A section of I-29 in Iowa remains closed due to flooding, from just north of Council Bluffs to Loveland.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a Flash Flood Watch from central Kansas to northern Missouri, but other areas may be added to the watch at some point. It won’t be raining all day and night, but rather in waves, with thunderstorms popping up as well. Isolated spots of large hail and very strong wind gusts may cause issues for some drivers.
On the northern side of the cold front, watch out for snowy, slushy and icy roads from southeastern Montana and northeastern Wyoming into the Dakotas. A few inches of snow could accumulate in some locations today through this evening, affecting travel on portions of I-90 and I-94. The NWS has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for areas including Miles City, Montana; Sheridan and Big Horn, Wyoming; and Dickinson, North Dakota.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, repairs on the I-10 bridge over the San Jacinto River near Houston are slowly progressing. The bridge was damaged by barges that broke loose from their moorings during major flooding in late September. Two eastbound lanes and two westbound lanes are open, but other lanes and ramps remain closed. Repairs won’t be finished until 2020.
Hurricane Lorenzo is spinning over the north Atlantic with winds of 90 mph. It’s moving quickly toward the United Kingdom and will likely maintain Category 1 hurricane strength upon landfall on Ireland’s western coast during the afternoon or evening of October 3.
Lorenzo will produce strong wind gusts, very heavy surf and heavy rainfall, along with possible power outages and wind damage. Shippers should expect significant delays due to disruptions at the ports of Galway and Cork – possibly for a few days – as well as impacts on air cargo and local supply chains in Ireland. Lorenzo should weaken after landfall prior to reaching Wales and western England on October 4.
Have a great day, and be careful out there!