Fred's remnant may bring area much-needed rain

CUMBERLAND, Md. — The remnants of Tropical Storm Fred could bring the area some much-needed rain this week.

Up to 3 inches of rain could fall, which would help eliminate some of 6-inch rainfall deficit accumulated so far this year, said Chad Merrill, a Cumberland native who serves as the weather prognosticator for the Hagerstown Town and Country Almanack.

Persistent dry conditions of recent weeks may disappear this week when the remnants of what is now Tropical Storm Fred converge on Mountain Maryland and the Potomac Highlands. Up to three inches of rainfall is expected, according to Merrill.

“Tropical Storm Fred will make landfall Monday in the Florida panhandle and then will be carried north around a high pressure ridge anchored along the East Coast,” Merrill said.

No drought conditions have been reported in Western Maryland, despite just a half-inch of rain falling in Cumberland this month, according to Tim Thomas, a local observer for the National Weather Service.

Cumberland typical receives about 3.17 inches of rain each August.

“The rain through the midweek will likely reach 1 1/2 to 3 inches, with the highest amounts along the Allegheny Plateau,” Merrill said, adding flash flooding in some areas is not out of the question.

Lack of rainfall has dropped the level of Jennings Randolph Lake at Elk Garden, West Virginia, by five inches daily in the last several days, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, leaving the beach inoperable.

Cooler temperatures moved into Cumberland and surrounding areas Saturday, ending a string of 90-degree days and heat advisories. Thursday’s temperatures reached 100 in Cumberland. The most recent 100-degree days in the city prior to last week were recorded in July 2013 and 2016, according to Thomas.

Jeff Alderton is a Cumberland Times-News reporter. To reach him, call/text 304-639-6888, email jlalderton@times-news.com and follow him on Twitter.

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