Moisture from now Tropical Storm Michael moving in from the south will interact with a cold front from the north, leading to drenching rain Thursday afternoon and evening and a dramatic change in the weather pattern starting Friday.
A Flash Flood Watch is in effect, starting at noon Thursday and lasting late Thursday night.
The tropical moisture surging northward from eastern North Carolina and Virginia will move up into the area Thursday afternoon into the evening.
Showers and a few thunderstorms will arrive in the afternoon and continue into the evening, with the rain heavy at times.
Average rainfall amounts of 1 1/2 to 2 inches are expected, with locally higher amounts of 2 to 4 inches possible. Rainfall rates as high as up to an inch an hour are possible.
Flash flooding is possible especially in low lying and poor drainage areas as well as creeks, brooks, and small streams as water levels are running above normal.
Any heavy rainfall that occurs within a one- to three-hour window may result in flash flooding.
The passage of the cold front will result in much cooler days starting Friday and continuing through the weekend, with a high temperature in the mid-50s to around 60 each day.
Michael was just two miles per hour short of Category 5 hurricane status of 157 mph winds when it made landfall in Florida on Wednesday, making it the strongest storm to make landfall in the continental U.S. since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
Hours after landfall, Michael became a Category 3 hurricane with 125 mph winds as its track shifted easterly toward Alabama and Georgia. It has now weakened to tropical storm status.
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