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Flood watch to begin Wednesday through Thursday in the GLOW region
Temperatures warming into the 50s on Wednesday and Thursday will bring snow melt and a flood watch to the region.
The snow melt will combine with possible rainfall exceeding an inch to bring the potential for flooding from high flows, ice jams, or a combination of both Thursday into Friday, according to the National Weather Service.
The Weather Service has issued a flood watch that will be in effect from Wednesday evening through Friday evening. The watch includes Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties, and also Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Monroe, Niagara, and northern and southern Erie counties.
Excessive runoff may result in flooding of rivers, creeks, streams, and other low-lying and flood-prone locations.
The greatest threat for flooding will be in ice jam prone areas, such as the Buffalo area creeks and near Sunset Bay on Cattaraugus Creek. Creeks and streams may rise out of their banks. Flooding may occur in poor drainage and urban areas, according to the Weather Service.
Others that have experienced ice jam flooding in the past should also be extra vigilant during this period, the Weather Service advises.
Significant warming ahead of a slow warming cold front will result in a major melt down of a large portion of the extensive snow pack over the region. While this warming will begin on Wednesday, melt water is not forecast to reach the tributaries until Wednesday evening, the Weather Service said.
High temperatures of 50 are forecast for the GLOW region on Wednesday, and temperatures could approach 60 degrees on Thursday, according to Weather Service forecasts.
A storm system will then track out of the Ohio valley late Wednesday night and Thursday, reaching our forecast area Thursday evening. This system is forecast to generate a half to one and a half inches of rain over western New York, most of which will come from midday Thursday into Thursday evening.
The combination of the significant rainfall and extensive snow melt will result in at least major rises on area tributaries, the Weather Service said..
Colder air will build in behind the system, with rain changing to snow or freezing rain. Several inches of snow accumulation is possible Thursday night along with some potential for ice, according to the Weather Service.
There still remains uncertainty in the track of the storm which will ultimately determine how our weather plays out, the Weather Service said.