Rain continues to fall across the central and eastern interior as July extends a trend that made June Fairbanks rainiest on record.
National Weather Service Meteorologist Scott Berg is tracking precipitation totals.
“Just the first day of July we had 1.92 inches of rainfall, and that was a new record for that date, and it was almost three times what the previous record was. Since midnight last night we’ve picked up a bit more. So far this month we’ve had 2.73 inches of rain,” he said.
Berg says that puts Fairbanks well on its way to above normal rainfall in July.
“Our normals for July are around 5 inches, so we’re about halfway there already,” he said.
More rain is forecast for the first half of today. Berg says a band of rain over the area is expected to move off to the northeast this afternoon.
“By midafternoon we should be seeing just some scattered showers around the area, and by evening maybe some isolated showers, but for the most part the rain will be done by 5 or 6 o’clock this evening,” he said.
While the rain is expected to stop, Berg says area rivers will continue to rise, elevating flood potential.
“We do look for most of them to start peaking by tomorrow sometime, or even into Friday. Once the river forecast folks from Anchorage arrive we’ll get some new model guidance from them as to where [the rivers] are actually going to start peaking. But they are a little bit ahead of where we were forecasting them to be yesterday,” he said.
The Army Corps of Engineers sent out message last night saying they anticipated lowering gates on the Moose Creek Dam at the Chena Flood Control project late today or Thursday.
A Flood warning is in effect for the Upper Chena, Salcha, Goodpaster Rivers and the Eastern Alaska Range. Flood Advisories have been issued for the Alaska Range, east of the Parks Highway, and the Birch Creek Basin north of Fairbanks. There’s a Flood Watch for the Tanana River between the communities of Salcha and Tanana.
Berg says the high water will coincide with more summer like weather over the 4th of July weekend.
“Drying conditions, thank goodness. We will see the temperatures come up a little bit, into the 70’s and possibly into the 80’s for the weekend,” he said.
Berg says there will be chance of afternoon thunderstorms through the weekend.