Some roadways slick, submerged after storms roll through DC area

Here's what Gaithersburg, Maryland, looked like at 5:40 p.m. on Thursday, May 31, 2018. (Courtesy Mindy Pierce)
Here’s what Gaithersburg, Maryland, looked like at 5:40 p.m. on Thursday, May 31, 2018. (Courtesy Mindy Pierce) (Courtesy Mindy Pierce)
A flash flood watch has been issued for almost all of the D.C. area starting at 2 p.m. Thursday and lasting through 2:00 a.m. Friday. Be prepared to seek higher ground should flooding develop and warnings issued. (Courtesy National Weather Service)
A flash flood watch was issued earlier for almost all of the D.C. area. It is no longer in effect. (Courtesy National Weather Service) (Courtesy National Weather Servic)
In the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, flash flood warnings are in effect for some areas close to Charlottesville, which saw as much as 10 inches of rain on Wednesday. (Courtesy National Weather Service)
In the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, flash flood warnings were issued for some areas close to Charlottesville, which saw as much as 10 inches of rain on Wednesday. (Courtesy National Weather Service) (Courtesy National Weather Servic)
In theory, you should be able to see the National Cathedral quite clearly from the roof of WTOP's studios in Northwest D.C. Alas, that was not the case on Thursday morning. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
In theory, you should be able to see the National Cathedral quite clearly from the roof of WTOP’s studios in Northwest D.C. Alas, that was not the case Thursday morning. (WTOP/Will Vitka) (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Rain soaked streets on Thursday morning in Northwest D.C., a flash flood watch will be in effect for most of the D.C. area starting at 2 p.m. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Rain soaked streets on Thursday morning in Northwest D.C. (WTOP/Will Vitka) (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Showers, thunderstorms and possibly more flooding is in the forecast for the D.C. area on Thursday, May 31. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Showers, thunderstorms and possibly more flooding was in the forecast for the D.C. area on Thursday, May 31, 2018. (WTOP/Will Vitka) (WTOP/Will Vitka)
A gloomy day in Northwest D.C. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
A gloomy day in Northwest D.C. (WTOP/Will Vitka) (WTOP/Will Vitka)
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Here's what Gaithersburg, Maryland, looked like at 5:40 p.m. on Thursday, May 31, 2018. (Courtesy Mindy Pierce)
A flash flood watch has been issued for almost all of the D.C. area starting at 2 p.m. Thursday and lasting through 2:00 a.m. Friday. Be prepared to seek higher ground should flooding develop and warnings issued. (Courtesy National Weather Service)
In the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, flash flood warnings are in effect for some areas close to Charlottesville, which saw as much as 10 inches of rain on Wednesday. (Courtesy National Weather Service)
In theory, you should be able to see the National Cathedral quite clearly from the roof of WTOP's studios in Northwest D.C. Alas, that was not the case on Thursday morning. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Rain soaked streets on Thursday morning in Northwest D.C., a flash flood watch will be in effect for most of the D.C. area starting at 2 p.m. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
Showers, thunderstorms and possibly more flooding is in the forecast for the D.C. area on Thursday, May 31. (WTOP/Will Vitka)
A gloomy day in Northwest D.C. (WTOP/Will Vitka)

WASHINGTON — Thursday night’s storms brought heavy rain and some flooding to roadways in parts of the region, including Northern Virginia and D.C.

In Fairfax County, Virginia, which had a flood warning issued from the National Weather Service, emergency crews conducted a number of water rescues after drivers got stuck. Some roadways were also closed due to high water.

In Prince William County, rescue crews had to help several drivers that stalled trying to get through standing water. But much of the heavy rain is over for Fairfax and Prince William counties, Storm Team 4 meteorologist Matt Ritter said. However, a flood warning remains in effect until 5:45 a.m. areas in central Prince William County and the cities of Manassas Park and Manassas.

D.C. Fire and EMS tweeted around 7:35 p.m. that a car was caught in high water in Northwest, but there weren’t any occupants in the area. Waters were already receding, they added.


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A flash flood watch was previously issued for the area until early Friday, but it is no longer in effect. Still, this month is shaping out to be the eighth wettest May on record for the D.C. area, with more rain in the forecast going into the weekend.

Ritter said, “There’s no doubt there’s some street flooding happening” for areas that may not have received a formal warning but are seeing rising waters anyway.

Storms should be completely out of the region by around midnight, Ritter said. But, he added, in 24 hours, these conditions could repeat, with Friday expected to be a steamy day with storms later.

Total rainfall for the month stands at 7.41 inches, which is 3.55 inches above normal amounts, said Storm Team 4 meteorologist Amelia Draper.

Considering the already saturated ground, Draper said more flooding will be a concern since there is more rain in the weekend forecast. Looking ahead, Draper recommends thinking of indoor plans for both Saturday and Sunday, since the weather forecast is not looking too good for outdoor activities.

Storm Team4 meteorologist Chuck Bell said it could be awhile before the D.C. area sees the sun and dry weather.

“Tropical moisture continues to wash over the area, which will keep flood concerns elevated for the next several days,” Bell said. The clouds will stick around on Friday, but warm and humid weather means more thunderstorms are likely to fire up in the afternoon and evening.

Bell said Saturday might wind up being the worst day.

“An area of low pressure is expected to form over the Chesapeake Bay on Saturday, causing rain, which will last through almost the entire day,” he said. “It will be soaking wet with rainfall amounts between 1 and 2 inches likely.”

Relief should be here by next week.

Bell said a cooler and drier pattern will move into the D.C. area starting Monday. “Afternoon highs are likely to stay in the 70s all next week, with only a slight chance of rain on Wednesday,” he said.

Weekend forecast

The rain will continue into the weekend, with Saturday potentially seeing the most rainfall.

Friday
Friday will be hot and very humid with showers and thunderstorms likely. Highs will get near 90 degrees. Draper said the morning will have patchy fog, the afternoon will have storm showers and the whole day might see flooding and damaging winds.

Saturday
Saturday, at least, will be cooler, with highs in the high 70s to low 80s. Bell said a low pressure area is expected to form over the Chesapeake Bay, which could cause rain that will last throughout the day. Rainfall amounts of 1 to 2 inches are likely.

Sunday
The clouds will continue on Sunday, which is expected to be a lot cooler. Highs will be in the high 60s to low 70s. There’s still a chance of rain on Sunday, but Bell said no heavy rain is expected.

Bell said the weather is expected to improve early next week with a cooler and drier pattern moving in on Monday and afternoon highs expected to stay in the 70s all next week.

Traffic

Police in Fairfax County, Virginia, tweeted about road closures due to high water Thursday night.

For the most updated traffic report, visit WTOP’s traffic center. You can see a map of the latest traffic conditions below.


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