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South Carolina Flooded: Catastrophic Flooding

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Continued bouts of heavy, tropical rainfall across the Southeast is leading to significant and widespread flooding, particularly in South Carolina, and there’s more rain on the way for several areas already hard-hit by as much as a foot of rainfall over the last few days.

Over six inches of rain had fallen in Charleston, South Carolina on Saturday alone – on top of several inches of rain that fell between Thursday and Friday – leading to widespread flood reports across the city and through much of coastal South Carolina in particular. Authorities in Charleston are urging local residents to stay off area roadways while flood concerns continue through the weekend. A daily record was set in Charleston on Saturday, with 6.44″ of rainfall recorded at the city’s airport as of Saturday evening, obliterating the old record of 3.28″ set back in 1994.

President Barack Obama declared South Carolina as a federal disaster zone on Saturday, opening federal funds to help state and local recovery efforts.

High tides are of particular concern with unusually high surf and torrential rainfall combining to enhance flood concerns across the region, especially in South Carolina. Reports of water overlapping the Charleston battery came in on Saturday morning, and while the water is expected to recede before low tide at about 7:15pm EDT local time, but high tide is expected near 2am EDT early Sunday morning.

The rain isn’t directly associated with Hurricane Joaquin, which as of Saturday evening was still a potent Category 4 hurricane, but an upper-level area of low pressure is helping funnel tropical moisture from Joaquin into the Carolinas. The low is moving slowly, which is enhancing the multi-day flood threat across the region.

The rainfall doesn’t let up until later Sunday and into early Monday as the low pulls away, but double-digit rainfall totals on top of what’s already fallen could make an already difficult situation catastrophic. Stay safe and stay with WeatherNation for all the latest on this developing situation.

For WeatherNation: Meteorologist Chris Bianchi

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