The National Weather Service at Pleasant Hill, Mo., has forecast a mixed bag of severe weather — heavy rains, strong winds, and flooding — for Chillicothe and the surrounding area.
The Grand River at Chillicothe, which measured below 6 feet this morning, is forecast to rise sharply over the next 30 hours and crest at 35.6 feet by 7 p.m. tomorrow (Thursday). Flood stage is 24 feet in Chillicothe. If predictions hold true, the 35.6-foot crest would carve a spot in the history books as the seventh highest flood. When the river level tops 35 feet in Chillicothe, the NWS considers it as reaching a major flood stage.
Once at a major flood stage level, U.S. Highway 36 southwest of Chillicothe is under water, U.S. Highway 65 south of Chillicothe is threatened by flood water, some rural roads are under water and some low-lying cropland is flooded.
The flood warning is issued for early Thursday morning through 1 a.m. Saturday.
Here’s a look at the current list of top 10 floods on record with the NWS:
(1) 39.60 ft on 07/25/1993
(2) 39.10 ft on 07/09/1993
(3) 37.14 ft on 05/10/2007
(4) 36.45 ft on 05/14/2010
(5) 36.40 ft on 05/25/1995
(6) 35.72 ft on 06/09/2010
(7) 35.32 ft on 06/26/2008
River forecasts for this location take into account past precipitation and the precipitation amounts expected approximately into the future from the forecast issuance time.
In addition to flooding on the Grand River, a tornado watch has been issued until 10 p.m. tonight (Wednesday).
A watch is used when the risk of a hazardous weather event has increased significantly, but its occurrence, location, and/or timing is still uncertain. It is intended to provide enough lead time so that those who need to set their plans in motion can do so.
For the rest of Wednesday, the NWS has forecast occasional showers and thunderstorms. Some thunderstorms may be severe with tornadoes. Locally heavy rainfall possible. Highs in the mid 50s. East winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of precipitation 80 percent.
Tonight — Occasional showers and thunderstorms. Locally heavy rainfall possible in the evening. Lows in the upper 40s. South winds 10 to 15 mph shifting to the west after midnight. Chance of precipitation near 100 percent.
Thursday — Considerable cloudiness. Showers likely and a chance of thunderstorms in the morning...Then a chance of showers in the afternoon. Highs in the upper 40s. Northwest winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts to around 25 mph. Chance of precipitation 70 percent.
Thursday night — Mostly cloudy. Chance of rain showers in the evening. Colder. Lows in the lower 30s. Northwest winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts to around 25 mph. Chance of precipitation 30 percent.
Emergency storm shelters in Chillicothe are located at the fire station (700 2nd Street), Livingston County Courthouse (700 Webster Street), Chillicothe City Hall (715 Washington Street), and First Baptist Church (1601 Bryan Street). The facilities are opened when surrounding counties go under a storm warning.
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