Flooding ongoing in downtown Charleston as heavy rain continues

/ December 23, 2019 at 8:31 AM

Unfortunately, as expected, widespread flooding is ongoing in downtown Charleston this morning as heavy rain combined with high tide to close numerous roads. Heavy rain will continue throughout the day, with another 4-6″+ expected across much of the Tri-County area through tonight.

2-3″ has already fallen

CoCoRaHS observers have recorded 1-3″ of rain in many spots in the Charleston metro area over the last 24 hours. A lot of this coincided with high tide to produce scenes such as a dumpster floating down Calhoun Street. (Yes, really).

As of this writing, 26 roads are closed in the Charleston area. You can track closures in Charleston on the City’s website. Mt. Pleasant has fared better, with no reported road closures as of yet.

The flooding risk is not limited to downtown

Another area to watch very closely is by Church Creek in West Ashley (near Shadowmoss). Heavier rain moving into the area could push the creek into flood stage soon.

Church Creek gauge as of 7:55am.

West Ashley residents should keep an ear out for possible flood advisories or warnings as today goes on. Same for those of you in Summerville, especially around Trolley Road and Central Avenue, two known trouble spots when heavy rain falls.

Rainfall forecast

Much more rain is to come as a band of heavy rain essentially stalls out somewhere over the Tri-County. The updated NWS forecast calls for another 6-8″ on top of what has already fallen in Charleston. Elsewhere, an additional 4-6″ of rain appears likely. A Flash Flood Watch will continue into tonight. Do not drive through flooded roads!

Winds may continue to be a problem as well, especially near the coast. With such saturated soils, it won’t take as much wind to bring down trees and power lines. Be prepared for possible power outages.

This post will be updated as the situation unfolds.

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