February 25 Weekly Flood Risk and Seasonal Outlook

The Brazos River in Richmond is currently at Gage Elevation 16.78 feet (Below Action Stage).

WGRFC 8:12 PM Brazos River at Richmond (02/25/19)

The current 10-day forecast shows mainly cloudy skies with increased rain chances Monday and Tuesday, which could be fairly strong. In fact, Monday’s storms appeared to be stronger than originally anticipated which included some areas receiving pea to dime size hail. Tuesday could be more of the same.

NWS Houston/Galveston Tuesday Rainfall Chances (02/25/19 @ 8:19 PM)
NWS Houston/Galveston Tuesday Storms (02/25/19 @ 7:16 PM)

After Tuesday, our rain chances remain below 50% as we move into the weekend and wait for another cold front to move through the area. Over the next 7 days, the lower Brazos River could see between 0.50 to 1.25 inches fall across the watershed. The majority of this rainfall could occur over the next 24 hours; however, we have the potential for some additional precipitation Sunday through Tuesday as another cold front moves through the region.

WeatherUnderground.com Richmond, Texas Extended Forecast (02/25/2019)
PivotalWeather.com Rainfall 7-Day Precipitation Forecast (02/25/19 6:00 PM)

Seasonal Outlook (March through May)

As mentioned last week, NOAA declared that El Nino conditions are present and on February 21st they released an updated 3 month seasonal outlook to account for these conditions. Based on the release, NOAA is forecasting that we could see above normal precipitation over the next 3 months. Please note that these forecasts do not predict the intensity of the rainfall nor do they forecast the volume of rainfall anticipated over the next several months. Instead, they show the potential for the continuation of a wet weather conditions. For reference, our normal precipitation values for Fort Bend County are 3.2 inches (March), 3.3 inches (April) and 4.1 inches (May).

NOAA Seasonal (3 Month) Outlook for March, April, May (02/21/2019)

In addition to the release of the seasonal update, the WGRFC has published their 3 month outlook for the Brazos River in Richmond. The graph below is a forecast of our weekly chances of exceeding the various River Stages. Overall, the graph shows that we have a good chance of staying below flood stage, but based on the forecast, we have the potential to see elevated levels (below minor flood stage) along the Brazos River.

WGRFC 3 Month Outlook – Weekly Chance of Exceeding River Stage (02/20/19)

As always, we will continue to watch the conditions and provide more details as needed.

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