Category Archives: Flooding

More storm spotter training sessions in Sedgwick County

Sedgwick County Emergency Management has finalized its storm spotter training class schedule for this spring. These sessions are in addition to the classes offered by the National Weather Service.

The emergency management presenters use the same course developed by the weather service. Their classes are simply more opportunities for residents who can’t make it to one of the weather service sessions.

Storm spotter training class schedule for Wichita area

The National Weather Service office in Wichita has released its schedule of storm spotter training classes for the region. They start next week in Sedan and continue through early April.

The classes are free and open to the public. This year’s sessions are expected to last about 90 minutes.

Additional classes will be scheduled by emergency management directors in each county, though those schedules have not yet been released.

Numerous rescues required as heavy rains inundate Wichita area

Street flooding ignited by substantial rains has prompted more than a half-dozen rescues from flooded vehicles this afternoon, authorities say.

No injuries have been reported from the rescues, which have taken place around the city and also in Valley Center north of Wichita. According to a Sedgwick County dispatch supervisor, the rescues have taken place at the following locations:

In Wichita:
13th and Maize
Murdock and Arapaho
37th North and Tyler
21st and Amidon
Harry and Seneca
14th and Meridian

In Valley Center:
400 S. Meridian

The National Weather Service has recorded 1.46 inches as of 4 p.m. The rains began falling in earnest at about 10:30 p.m. Street flooding has been most prominent in west Wichita, authorities say, primarily along Maize Road from Kellogg to 13th Street. No homes have flooded, however.

Thousands still without power after strong storm strikes Wichita

More than 11,000 Westar Energy customers are still without electricity this morning after a strong storm pounded the Wichita area late Wednesday night.

The outages are spread throughout the city, with power lines and some utility poles down, authorities say. Winds of nearly 70 miles an hour were reported at Jabara Airport in northeast Wichita at 10:45 p.m., said Scott Smith, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

“There are reports of downed poles throughout the area,” said Leonard Allen, a Westar spokesman.

He does not have an estimate on the numbers yet, though.

Wichita recorded 2.25 inches of rain from the storm, along with straight line winds that downed tree limbs throughout the city. Many streets flooded in the torrential rains, and roof damage and flooding were reported at Mid-Continent Airport.

A flood warning remains in effect until 8:30 a.m. in eastern Sedgwick County. More rain is possible today,forecasters say, with highs topping out at about 98. But it will be quite muggy, with heat index values of about 105.

Hermine is almost here

The remnants of Tropical Storm Hermine are closing in on Wichita, forecasters say, with rain already reported in Wellington and Derby.

Expect a light, steady rain to persist through dawn Thursday, forecasters say, with an inch or two falling in Wichita and heavier amounts south and east of the metro area.

“It does look like southeastern Kansas is going to get quite a bit more” rain, WeatherData meteorologist Phil Warren said.

Chanute, for instance, could get 6 inches of rain, he said. Butler County may receive 3 inches.

A trough moving east will be pushing the heaviest rain away from Wichita, Warren said, so the city could receive a welcome soaking rather than amounts that could induce flooding.

But the National Weather Service is keeping the flood watch through Thursday intact for the city because the storm’s remnants feature tight gradients.

That means the system is organized in such a way that two cities not that far apart on the map could receive significantly different rainfall amounts.

“We’re just on the western edge” of the heavier rain, said Chris Jakub, a National Weather Service meteorologist, so the flood watch for Wichita is being maintained as a precaution.

More flood warnings in Wichita area

The National Weather Service in Wichita has issued flood warnings for a number of counties in central and southcentral Kansas as substantial rain continues to fall in the region.

The warnings last until 2:15 p.m. for northeastern Reno County, Rice County, southeastern Ellsworth County and southwestern McPherson County. Radar estimates nearly 4 inches of rain was measured in Nickerson in Reno County, and more rain is expected.

More than 2 inches of rain has been recorded in Wichita so far this morning, and a flood warning is in effect for southern Sedgwick County until 1:15 p.m. today.

Flood warning for portions of Sedgwick, Sumner counties

A flood warning has been posted until 9 p.m. for portions of Sedgwick and Sumner counties of south-central Kansas.

The National Weather Service has posted the warning for southeastern Sedgwick and northeastern Sumner counties as a result of very heavy rainfall in the designated area.

Radar estimates 1 to 2 inches of rain have fallen across the area, with another 1 to 2 inches possible.

The heavy rain is expected to trigger street flooding as well as leave water on highways and underpasses. Rural country roads and farmland along creek banks and streams will be susceptible to flooding as well.

Flood warnings issued for Sumner and Harper counties

The National Weather Service has issued flood warnings for Harper and Sumner counties in southern Kansas.

Anywhere from 2 to 4 inches of rain fell in Harper County overnight, officials said, with higher amounts reported in small pockets. The southern half of the county was hit particularly hard.

Water has been reported over K-44 and K-179 east and south of Anthony, as well as some rural roads in the county. Additional rain is expected to flood small creeks and streams, as well as country roads, low water crossings and adjacent farm land.

The Chikaskia River near Corbin in Sumner County is forecast to flood later today, the weather service reported. At 7 a.m., the water stage was 8.8 feet. Flood stage is 10 feet, and the water is expected to rise above that late this morning.

The Chikaskia is expected to crest near 12 feet by this afternoon before falling below flood stage Wednesday morning. Farm land flooding is anticipated.

Meanwhile, across the pond…….

….in England, one of the people I met while working on a story about storm chase tours several years ago alerted me that the United Kingdom last week recorded its heaviest rainfall ever in a 24-hour period.

Martin Ferris wrote that Seathwaite in the Lake District of northern England recorded 314.4 millimeters (12.4 inches), beating the previous record of 279 millimeters (11.0 inches) set in 1955.

Massive flooding was reported in the region, inundating hundreds of homes and killing a policeman who was standing on a bridge at Cockermouth when the floodwaters tore it apart and swept him away.

Flood watch for Wichita and surrounding area

The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for 17 counties in southern Kansas, including the Wichita metropolitan area.

The watch lasts through Tuesday afternoon. Scattered thunderstorms are expected to continue overnight in the warned area, with rain falling on already saturated ground.

The counties included in the watch are Reno, Harvey, Butler, Greenwood, Woodson, Allen, Kingman, Sedgwick, Harper, Sumner, Cowley, Elk, Wilson, Neosho, Chautauqua, Montgomery and Labette.

Cities in the watch area are Wichita, Hutchinson, Newton, El Dorado, Augusta, Andover, Kingman, Sedan, Yates Center, Anthony, Harper, Wellington, Winfield, Arkansas City, Chanute, Coffeyville, Independence and Parsons.