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Henri Still Impacting Northeast, Flash Floods Possible

National Weather Service Albany

The remnants of Tropical Cyclone Henri continue to impact the Northeast today, including the majority of the WAMC listening area. For the latest on the storm, WAMC’s Jim Levulis spoke with Brian Frugis, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service Albany.

Frugis: Tropical Storm Henri came ashore across southern New England during the day yesterday. And overnight, it's traveled westward towards eastern New York. And it's now starting to return back towards New England for today. The heaviest rain with the storm has mostly been over southern New England, across Rhode Island and Connecticut. But there's also been some heavy rain as it extended back to the west across southern New York, including the Catskills, as well as parts of northern New Jersey has gotten hit with some pretty heavy rain as well.

Levulis: And with rain still forecast for today, as you mentioned, what should people be on the lookout for today?

Frugis: The biggest thing with this is we're looking for some heavy downpours. Rain from tropical systems can fall very heavy, producing, you know, significant rainfall in a short period of time. And that's the kind of rainfall that can quickly you know, turn roads into rivers and cause that type of flash flooding that is dangerous. So definitely the main concern we're seeing today is the heavy downpours that may lead some localized flooding as the storm continues to kind of slowly meander its way out of the region.

Levulis: Now some of the forecasts a couple days ago obviously mentioned some higher rainfall totals for the Capital Region. What spared the greater Capital Region from the worst of those forecasts?

Frugis: The main track of the storm has spun further to the south. It's moved from Connecticut and now closer to the mid-Hudson Valley. And now it's returning back to the east. So some of the heavier bursts of rain have remained close to the Catskills, mid-Hudson Valley and northwest Connecticut. Some of those areas have seen already, anywhere from two to four inches of rain, and it's still raining down there. While, close to the Capital Region we've been right around an inch or so. And we may still see some additional downpours today, but probably not going to be into the three to four or five inches in this area.

Levulis: Overall, how unusual is it to see a storm like this make landfall in the Northeast and especially the interior Northeast in a sense?

Frugis: Yeah, it's not something we see every year. You know, there have been, you know, many cases in recorded history of storms making landfall in you know, in the Northeast and New England. But it's not something that we see every year, it's kind of more of an occasional event. You know, one of the more unusual things about this storm is usually these systems kind of come in and come out pretty quickly, they usually accelerate when they're over the Northeast. This one's a little bit more on the unusual side that it's moving very slowly, and kind of dissipating over the region instead of getting out of here rather fast.

Levulis: And what are the predictions for the remainder of the hurricane season?

Frugis: Well, the one thing about the hurricane season is you always have to be prepared. You know, things can change rather quickly. We are only in August and hurricane season does go through the fall, technically ending at the end of November. So you know, it's hard to say if we'll see another storm again in the Northeast this year. But with the season not even at its peak yet it's something we should always be prepared for.

Jim is WAMC’s Assistant News Director and hosts WAMC's flagship news programs: Midday Magazine, Northeast Report and Northeast Report Late Edition. Email: jlevulis@wamc.org