Lily Shulkins, 16, a junior at Decatur high school heads across the artistic design over the Decatur MARTA station. Rain moved into metro Atlanta early Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013 and forecasters are warning that another soggy weather system arriving late in the weekend could bring the risk of flooding to north and central Georgia.
At 6:30 a.m. Thursday, the leading edge of the rain had reached the western half of the metro area, and was “really coming down hard” in the southwestern suburbs, Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Karen Minton reports.
A steady rain soaked metro Atlanta on Thursday, and forecasters are warning that another soggy weather system arriving late in the weekend could bring the risk of flooding to north and central Georgia.
Friday, expect a 20 percent chance of isolated showers during the afternoon, with highs in the upper 50s and lows in the upper 30s, Channel 2 Actions News chief meteorologist Glenn Burns said.
After a sunny Saturday with highs in the upper 50s, “a second system will approach the area and bring more rain chances to the state Sunday through Wednesday,” the National Weather Service said in a statement early Thursday.
While rainfall totals Thursday and early Friday should average around an inch, the Weather Service said 2 to 5 inches of rain could fall Sunday through Wednesday, with as much as 6 inches of rain possible across central Georgia.
“This will definitely put a dent in the drought we are in,” the Weather Service said, adding, “this has the potential to also be a bad situation as we could see some flooding as well.”
The Weather Service said that current forecast models are indicating that the heaviest rain next week will be across central Georgia.
“That is a good thing because central Georgia can handle that much precipitation without having too many issues with flooding,” the Weather Service said. “If the rain shifts northward, where we have already had quite a bit of rain this season, then flooding could become a major problem.”
The winter rain has been good news for Lake Lanier, Atlanta’s primary source of drinking water. In late November, Lanier fell to 1,058 feet above sea level, its lowest level in two-and-a-half years.
Since then, the lake’s level has climbed 6 feet, to 1,064 feet and is up more than half a foot since Feb. 1.
Metro Atlanta’s rainfall total for the year is a little over 5 inches, which is about normal.
Staff writer Bryan Cronan contributed to this report.