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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Flooding possible for Haiti and rest of Caribbean

It is now fairly apparent that the tropical wave that looked so likely to develop into a named storm is not likely to. Unfortunately, this system has remained together well enough that it is dumping massive amounts of rain as it moves towards the Caribbean and the southeastern US.

The projected path, which can be seen a few posts down, shows that there is a high likelihood that the storm will pass over the island of Hispaniola dumping as much as 6 inches of rain or more onto Haiti. Since the island is so mountainous, the effect of this much rain is likely to be amplified in the form of flash floods.

Flood Threat for Caribbean Islands, Including Haiti (AccuWeather)

The tropical disturbance that was once being monitored for development will continue to produce flooding downpours across portions of the Caribbean islands into this weekend. This includes earthquake-devastated Haiti.

The disturbance's downpours are currently impacting northern parts of the Leeward Islands as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Numerous downpours will next spread over Haiti and the Dominican Republic tonight into Sunday.

The mountainous terrain of Puerto Rico and Hispaniola, the island shared by Haiti and the Dominican Republic, will enhance the rainfall produced by the disturbance.

Some mountainous locations, especially those that face southeast, could receive up to 6 inches of rain. Dangerous mudslides and flooding are serious concerns.

The mountains in far southern Haiti should actually help the nation's capital, Port-au-Prince, escape the heaviest rain. As the air descends from these mountain peaks, some moisture will get lost.

Graphic courtesy of AccuWeather

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