MetroNews staff photo

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Much of West Virginia is under an areal flood watch this weekend, issued by the National Weather Service in Charleston due to ground saturation and new rain accumulation.

The flood watch includes portions or all of Barbour, Boone, Braxton, Cabell, Calhoun, Clay, Doddridge, Gilmer, Harrison, Jackson, Kanawha, Lewis, Lincoln, Logan, Mason, McDowell, Mingo, Fayette, Nicholas, Pocahontas, Raleigh, Randolph, Webster, Pleasants, Putnam, Ritchie, Roane, Taylor, Tyler, Upshur, Webster, Wayne, Wirt, Wood and Wyoming counties.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Nick Webb said to anticipate anywhere from 1 to 3 inches of rain from Saturday evening into Sunday in the central and southern parts of the state.

“We have a front that’s going to be dropping down over the weekend and is going to stall out over the area hitting us Saturday afternoon and hanging around through the first half of Sunday,” Webb said. “As it does so we’re going to have waves of low pressure right along the front, and that’s going to allow for copious amounts of moisture and periods of moderate to heavy rainfall to fall pretty much across much of the state.”

Given how much rain the region has already seen over the last two weeks, Webb said that much rainfall could be trouble.

“That amount of rain, given the saturated soils, that’s probably going to cause some flooding problems on your streams, creeks and even your bigger creeks,” he said. “We’re going to monitor the main stem rivers to see how they respond, to see if there’s any potential for river flooding from those heavy rains that we’ll have later onto Sunday and Monday.”

Webb reminds residents to remember the “Turn around, don’t drown” motto if out on the roadways this weekend.

“If you see standing water on any roadways, the best course of action is to find an alternate route to your destination,” he said. “Be especially wary at nighttime, as flooding can be especially hard to see given the darkness, and heed any road closures that may result from the heavy rain.”

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