Record rainfall leads to flooding in Anchorage

Anchorage beat an almost 30-year-old record on Monday for most rainfall in a single day.

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Rainfall data from Monday, June 6th, 2016. (Graphic from National Weather Service)
Rainfall data from Monday, June 6th, 2016. (Graphic from National Weather Service)

The record for most rainfall was set in 1988 with a total of .73 inches. By 4 p.m. on Monday, the record was smashed with a new high of 1.02 inches. National Weather Service meteorologist Dave Snider said that it looks like the record is likely to be higher by the end of the night.

“Looking at the latest radar picture, it looks like there are still some pockets of heavier precipitation out there,” Snider said. “Some of that’s heading towards the Anchorage area and will continue to do that through the rest of the afternoon. So we’re still in the process of setting a new rainfall record.”

With the recent spike in wildfires across the state, Snider said that the incoming rain could spell good news for the immediate future.

“It certainly helps,” Snider said. “The trick will be does this interrupt a very long dry stretch only for a day, or is this something that’s going to help us stay cool and moist for the next several weeks to come. And it’s really hard to tell if this is something that sticks around that long, but at least for the next several days, this should dampen the wick just a little bit.”

Despite the positive outlook for wildfires, the heavy rainfall has caused flooding warnings in the Chester Creek area. Turnagain Blvd. was closed from Spenard Rd. through Borland Dr. intersection due to flooding from the creek. Turnagain reopened Tuesday morning following the rain.

The National Weather Service tweeted that the rainfall from Monday caused the third wettest June day in Anchorage on record.

Citizens can monitor the rainfall at weather.gov/anchorage.