Tag Archive for: heavy rains

Photos of Kingwood’s First RV Resort after Heavy Rains Last Weekend

One thing became immediately clear after reviewing aerial photos of the Kingwood area’s first RV resort last Monday. The heavy rains created a mud pit. After removing every tree and blade of grass on these 20 acres, the owners of this project will have to pave over virtually the entire site to make it useable.

I took all photos below on Sunday morning 1/9/22 after heavy rains stopped, but between sporadic light rains.

Laurel Springs RV Resort after Heavy Weekend Rains

Looking NW from over Laurel Springs Lane at Kingwood’s first RV resort and its detention pond after a 5.5 inch rain.
Silt seems to be piling up along silt fence on right, an indication of how site is sloped.
Contractors are starting to build roads. But look at ponding on either side of first one.
Looking SSE across RV resort from over UP railroad tracks at Lakewood Cove.
Rains can delay construction by making it difficult to work the ground.
Note drainage running down Centerpoint utility corridor.
Note heavy erosion and debris in detention pond.
Currently lip of detention pond is below road level. Overflow from pond will likely go into Edgewater Park’s cypress ponds below hill.

Bad News, Good News

Most of the initial fears that Lakewood Cove residents had about this site remain valid. Railroad noise. Traffic safety. Road destruction. School impact. And more.

However, after seeing the response of the site to last weekend’s heavy rains, I’m less concerned about the site flooding Lakewood Cove if the southern lip of the detention pond remains at its current height.

Presently, the pond lip is much lower than the road as you can see in the photo above. If it stays that way, overflow stormwater will go down the hill west of Laurel Springs into what will soon become Precinct 4’s new Edgewater Park.

It’s important to keep in mind that last weekend’s storm was a 2- to 5-year storm, according to Jeff Lindner, Harris County’s meteorologist. So this wasn’t a very big test of the resort’s drainage systems. A hundred year storm would drop three times the rainfall.

The pond currently has half the required capacity to meet current rainfall standards. Still, last weekend was significant. Kingwood was among the hardest hit areas in Harris County.

However, there’s also a significant amount of dirt piled on the northern lip of the pond. It’s unclear where contractors will put that. If they use it to build up the southern lip, that could change the game.

Clearly, the owners lucked out with the timing of this storm. They substantially completed the detention pond before the storm. Otherwise, this could have turned into another Woodridge Village/Elm Grove situation.

Posted by Bob Rehak on 1/14/2022

1599 Days since Hurricane Harvey

The thoughts expressed in this post represent opinions on matters of public concern and safety. They are protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution and the Anti-SLAPP Statute of the Great State of Texas.

High Chance of Thunderstorms Every Day into Next Week

After a few drier days during the Memorial Day weekend, wet weather is returning and will last into next week. We should see a high chance (50% or greater) of thunderstorms every day for the next week.

Pattern Similar to Last Month Setting Up

According to Harris County Meteorologist Jeff Lindner, the upcoming pattern will resemble the heavy rains of early last week and similar patterns in 2015 and 2016. Slow moving low-pressure systems over the southwest US will send multiple disturbances across Texas starting today and lasting into early next week.

Harris County Flood Control inspects damage from heavy rains in May to recently repaired Ben’s Branch. Photo courtesy of Chris Bloch.

Onshore winds will ensure a steady influx of Gulf moisture, high humidity and rainfall production. Disturbances will emerge from northeast Mexico into central and south central Texas nearly every day. Clusters and complexes of thunderstorms will develop and move east into the Houston region.

Difficult to Precisely Predict Heavy Downpours

“When exactly each disturbance will rotate out of Mexico is uncertain. And what state the local air mass will be ahead of each disturbance will also be hard to determine,” said Lindner.

But this pattern, he continued, “will support complexes and clusters of thunderstorms from Tuesday onward – with both a heavy rainfall and marginal severe weather threat. Some days will likely have higher threats of both.”

Widespread rainfall of 3-5 inches is likely over the next several days.

Jeff Lindner, Harris County meteorologist

While our minds may be inclined to spread such totals out evenly over the course of 5-7 days, “that is usually not how it works,” warns Lindner. “At this time of year, we could see 1-3 inches fall in a few hours or less as clusters and complexes move across the region.”

Grounds are still wet from the 10-15 inches of rainfall in May. It will not take much rainfall to trigger run-off and renewed rises on area watersheds, especially as rainfall totals accumulate over time.

Posted by Bob Rehak on 6/1/2021, based on information provided by HCFCD

1372 Days since Hurricane Harvey

Widespread Heavy Rains Predicted Later This Week; Minor Flooding Possible

Expect heavy rains Wednesday night into Thursday – New Year’s Eve morning – as two powerful storm systems collide over Texas this week. One front will dip down from Canada, then another from California will ride up over it producing a variety of threats.

Predicted accumulations for the next 7 days. Chances of rain will increase on Wednesday and peak Wednesday night at 90%. Chances of rain will decrease on Thursday, New Year’s Eve, but peak at 70%.

The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center predicts a marginal risk of severe storms, damaging winds and tornadoes for areas west of I-45. However, the threat from heavy rains will be more widespread. Slow-moving or training showers and thunderstorms will produce 1-2 inches for the entire region and 3-4 inches in isolated locations. One normally conservative forecaster predicts up to 5 inches. North Texas will have it worse.

Impact on Lake Houston Area

In the Houston area, the most rainfall will be east of I-45 and north of I-10 or across the region’s northeast counties.

Jeff Lindner, Harris County Meteorologist

Minor Flooding Possible

Most area streams should be able to handle the heavy rains. However, Lindner, says area watersheds could swell. He blames higher than normal run-off due to low evaporation rates and dead/dormant vegetation. The National Weather Service predicts this may result in minor flooding of low lying, poorly-drained areas.

Holiday travel may be impacted if and where accumulations occur. Take note, especially if you’ve been visiting families in north or central Texas.

How Fronts Will Interact

The strong cold front should be off the coast by Thursday morning. However the Pacific front will lift lots of moisture over the incoming cold air mass. The cooling caused by the rising air (advection) will trigger precipitation. Lindner says areas from northwest of a line between Columbus to Huntsville may see rain mixed with sleet/snow.

Space City Weather predicts potential for heavy storms on Wednesday and Wednesday night with much of the area receiving 2 to 3 inches of rainfall. “We cannot entirely rule out this precipitation turning into a wintry mix north of Houston later on Thursday,” says the popular, normally conservative service. They say they can’t rule out a few isolated areas with 5 inches. They also note that forecast certainty will improve by Tuesday, as higher-resolution models come into play.

NWS predicts cooler and drier conditions Friday through the first weekend of the new year.

Posted by Bob Rehak on 12/28/2020

1217 Days since Hurricane Harvey