Weather

Heavy rains predicted early Thursday

Destiny Bolt, 5, walks home in Biloxi with her sister Bernice on Wednesdaybefore heavy rains hit South Mississippi.
Destiny Bolt, 5, walks home in Biloxi with her sister Bernice on Wednesdaybefore heavy rains hit South Mississippi. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com

The National Weather Service in New Orleans on Wednesday updated its flash-flood watch for all of South Mississippi to begin early in the afternoon as two waves of strong storms hit the Coast were predicted to continue overnight.

The flash-flood watch is in effect through Thursday morning, and the weather service warns 3 to 5 inches of rain could fall by then. The heaviest rains were expected over areas along and south of Interstate 10.

The weather service early Wednesday had upgraded the risk of severe weather for the area to enhanced, which is the third of its five risk levels. However, by about 3:30 p.m. the risk was reduced to slight, which is the second level. That means an area of organized severe storms would be in the area, but not widespread. Risks were listed as wind gusts more than 60 mph, large hail, heavy rainfall and isolated tornadoes.

A warm front bringing moisture up from the Gulf of Mexico was responsible for the first wave of rain in the afternoon. The front mainly affected south Louisiana and brought quarter-size hail to Grand Isle, as well as tornado and severe-thunderstorm watches.

Overnight, a cold front pushing a large area of storms across the South was predicted to reach South Mississippi after midnight and last through 9 a.m.

Lauren Walck: 228-896-2393, @laurenwalck

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