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Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 04/18/2011

Raging Potomac river prompts water rescues, floods Georgetown


Flooding at Washington Harbor in Georgetown. Photographed at 9:50 a.m. Monday morning. (@bpeebles via Twitter)

3:15 p.m. update: The National Weather Service has extended the coastal flood warning for the District, Arlington, and Alexandria until noon tomorrow. Tides are expected to be 3 to 5 feet above normal, increasing water levels to 10-10.5 feet. At 10 feet, water approaches K St. at Washington Harbor and at 10.5 feet water approaches Independence Avenue at 17th St. along the Tidal Basin and the GW Parkway at the railroad bridge north of National Airport. High tides are between 9 and 9:30 p.m. tonight, and 9:30 and 9:45 a.m. Tuesday morning.

2:45 p.m. update: The woman who was clinging to a true on the Potomac (see 2:15 update) has been pulled out of the water by Montgomery County rescue officials. Peak flows on the Potomac today reached around 180,000 cubic feet per second, whereas the average is about 11,000.

2:15 p.m. update: A water rescue is underway on the Potomac for a woman clinging to a tree near Darnestown, Md. according to multiple reports.

2 p.m. update: The National Weather Service indicates the Georgetown Parking Lot was under 12 feet of water around noon, with two feet of water at National Harbor plaza.

Noon update: Patricia Sullivan reports flooding at Washington Harbor in Georgetown was sufficiently serious to cause the evacuation of some businesses this morning.

From 9 a.m.: More than 40 severe weather warnings (severe thunderstorm, flood, tornado, and special marine) were issued across northern Virginia, northeast West Virginia, and central Maryland Saturday. And while the storms were nowhere near as violent as those that hit southern Virginia and North Carolina, some parts of our region continue to feel their effects.

The main impacts of the storms since Saturday have been river and coastal flooding. Some parts of western Virginia and western Maryland experienced more than 2” of rain in a very short time period, causing rivers and streams to swell. The push of freshwater from upstream is expected to cause moderate flooding around Georgetown today around high tide. As such, the National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a coastal flood warning for the District through midnight. Tides are expected to be two to three feet above average.

High tides today are at 9:03 a.m. and 9:38 p.m. at the Key Bridge, and 9:13 p.m. at Washington Channel (after this morning’s high tide at 8:38 a.m.).

River flooding continues to be an issue upstream with flood warnings in effect for the following rivers:

* Potomac River at Harpers Ferry, Point of Rocks, and near Little Falls

* Shenandoah near Millville

* South fork of the Shenandoah at Front Royal

* Rappahannock at Remington

* Monocacy River near Frederick


Flooding in Annapolis, Saturday (Ali Oz)
The flooding has necessitated multiple water rescues including 20 boy scouts along the Potomac this morning. And tragically, in Waynesboro, Va. a child drowned Saturday after being swipt of a bridge into a stream during flash flooding according to NWS.

In addition to river flooding, southerly winds ahead of Saturday’s storm caused tidal waters to rise, resulting in flooding in Annapolis. Flood levels peaked at 4.6 feet above normal early Sunday according to the Baltimore Sun. Flooding was also reported in Old Town, Alexandria.

By  |  09:00 AM ET, 04/18/2011

Categories:  Latest, Floods

 
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