Here we go again: Thunderstorms, flooding possible Thursday & Sunday

finger lakes weather forecast thunderstorms flash flooding
Heavy thunderstorms may cause more flooding in the Finger Lakes on Thursday with a second, possibly larger threat on Sunday. [Background Photo by Joe Scaglione III]

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Thursday Thunderstorm & Flood Threat

The Finger Lakes has been dry and sunny for two days, so surely the area is due for another round of thunderstorms and flooding.

That is exactly what may be in store for the late afternoon and evening hours today.

A disturbance moving into Ontario, Canada this morning is already producing showers and thunderstorms over the Upper Great Lakes.

Sunny skies this morning will help temperatures to rise and the atmosphere to become primed for thunderstorms.

By the time this disturbance arrives during the afternoon and evening hours, showers and thunderstorms appear to be likely across the Finger Lakes.

Thunderstorms will drop in from the northwest starting about 3 or 4 pm and will continue until 8 or 9 pm tonight. UPDATE: Thunderstorms are moving quickly east and should arrive in the western Finger Lakes by around 1 PM and will spread east, exiting the area by 5 or 6 PM. There is at least some potential for multiple thunderstorms in a single location.

Ahead of these storms, the atmosphere will become moisture laden once again. Precipitable water, a measure of how much rain the atmosphere can produce, is expected to be at similar levels to recent flash flood events.

All of the Finger Lakes region is susceptible to flooding with rain amounts of 1-1.5 inches in an hour or 2 inches or less in three hours. Once again, these rates could easily be reached or exceeded this afternoon.

There will also be a risk for some damaging winds and hail with these storms. Flash flooding, however, will once more be the primary concern.

Growing Concern for Sunday

Unfortunately, there is growing concern for the weather on Sunday.

Another push of tropical air will cause a slow moving front to creep into the area. Waves of thunderstorms are likely along the front this weekend, possibly spreading severe weather and flooding along their path.

Obviously, if the region gets more heavy rain today, Sunday will be primed for flooding with any additional heavy rain.

Moreover, the signals I am seeing in the models at this point have me at least somewhat concerned for a greater risk of severe thunderstorms with damaging winds the primary threat.

The details on how everything will unfold are still extremely uncertain. A slight shift north or south could keep the most substantial weather just outside of our region.

However, if you have outdoor plans for Sunday, you need to continue to monitor the forecast.

Luckily, Friday and Saturday (most likely) look to be dry across the region.

Meteorologist Drew Montreuil
Follow Meteorologist Drew Montreuil:

Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.) When not forecasting, he can be found working at the local library, making soap, or playing with his two young boys.

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