Major tidal flooding not expected with Friday’s storm

Posted at 7:08 PM, Mar 06, 2014
and last updated 2014-03-06 19:08:39-05

Virginia Beach, Va. -Rain and wind will make way for a rather miserable day for a lot of us Friday.  But despite all of the moisture we have seen from our recent snows, Virginia Beach officials are not expecting major flooding concerns as a coastal storm moves through the area.

"We're going to have some rain but probably not at the level that's going to create a lot of urban flooding in our community," said Mark Marchbank, Deputy Coordinator for Emergency Management with the City of Virginia Beach.

Marchbank says he and the Public Works Department are closely watching the forecast for potential flooding.

"I've seen as high as estimates of an inch and a half. But I don't think that amount of rain will be a real concern to us. Our biggest concerns of rain are the short bursts of rain that come down in a short period of time," said Marchbank.

When it comes to significant flooding in our area because of coastal storms and nor'easters, we often have to look at the consecutive tidal cycles, when the water builds up, especially in the Chesapeake Bay. But so far, the forecast is not indicating major flooding concerns with Friday's storm.

"One thing people need to realize is that the nor'easter is one of our significant threats - that if we look back in our history, the Ash Wednesday Storm and some of the smaller northeasters - creating flooding similar to a category storm that can impact people's property. It can be disruptive in terms of that.  And it can last for several days because of the repeated tide cycles," said Marchbank.

Now, while we're not expecting nor'easter conditions with Friday's storm, minor flooding is still a possibility, especially around high tide.

"At this point, the threat's not to the point where we really start to mobilize a lot of our things to deal with the anticipated conditions," said Marchbank.

Marchbank says city officials will keep an eye on weather conditions throughout the event.

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