Heavy Rainfall Likely Sunday Into Monday
Models continue to suggest that Florence will eventually track over WNC after it makes landfall. There is still vast disagreement on how much precipitation will actually be dropped in the mountains though. Models like the European model bring around 5” of rainfall for Downtown Asheville through Monday evening, with 10”+ maximums along the Blue Ridge Escarpment. On the other hand, the less consistent GFS model on sees a couple of inches of rain for WNC, and only 3”-4” of rain along the Escarpment. There is a huge different in 10”+ and only a couple of inches. Therefore, I don’t want to make any rash determinations.. but I do believe the Euro will be correct. Given its record with this storm, and how it picked up on the ridge shoving Florence ashore first, give me confidence that it might also be on to something here. What I mean, is that the Euro is picking up on the extra lift that the mountains will produce as Florence approaches.. enhancing rainfall. Time will tell, and we should have a better idea this afternoon and into tomorrow on exactly how much rainfall we will receive.
If you feel an anxiety around Asheville as this storm approaches, there is good reason. In 2004, WNC experience extensive flooding from back to back (Ivan & Frances) slow moving hurricanes. Rainfall was relentless funneled into WNC, and water had to be released from the North Fork Reservoir. Flooding ensued all along the Swannanoa River & French Broad River. Some locations received 20”+ of rainfall. A mudslide in Jackson Co. killed numerous people. So if you are bashing people for getting prepared.. stop. Those that have lived up here for an extend period of time know what tropical entities can do to WNC.. and they remember 2004.
How To Prepare?
Just get the essentials for your family to be without power for a few days. In 2004, a main waterline broke and water access around the city was extremely limited. Therefore, thats why you see many around the city panic buying. The storm will not arrive in WNC until Saturday afternoon, or Saturday evening, so make sure to fill up your gas tank before then.. but do not panic.. gas trucks should be able to make deliveries through the storm. Secure loose yard accessories, and make sure to bring pets indoors. This is not the time to panic, its the time to be mindful of the past. Check back this afternoon for another video as we keep an eye on Hurricane Florences progression.