Messy morning sees downed trees, power outages

A slow-moving line of heavy rain began to move out of North Carolina by noon Thursday, but showers will come and go for the rest of the day.

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A slow-moving line of heavy rain began to move out of North Carolina by noon Thursday, but showers will come and go for the rest of the day.

WRAL meteorologists Elizabeth Gardner, Aimee Wilmoth and Zach Maloch said it will rain steadily all morning, with the heaviest downpours occurring in the viewing area before noon. Track the rain with the DualDoppler5000.

By 10 a.m., the heaviest bands of rain were east of the Triangle, but steady rain could fall across the viewing area until noon or 1 p.m., at least, Gardner said.

A flood advisory expired for the Triangle at 9 a.m., Johnston, Wayne, Wilson and Nash counties are under flood advisories until noon as rain continues to soak the region. Get a live look at current weather conditions across the state.

Apart from some trees that fell much earlier Thursday morning, Gardner said the viewing area didn't see a lot of damage from the storms. Normal threats, like lightning or tornadoes, never came to be.

"This was mainly a flooding event for us," she said, although a lot of wind-related damage occurred in the Triangle while people were still sleeping. At 3:30 a.m., rain was already falling in our western counties. Durham and Chapel Hill saw rain by 5 a.m., and by 6 a.m., the heaviest rain was in Raleigh and Cary.

More than 2,000 people lost power in the Triangle when gusty winds brought down trees in North Raleigh, downtown Cary and Apex, leaving some communities in the dark. Conditions were the worst west of the viewing area. In Charlotte, water rescues were underway before sunrise and roads were flooded.

The rain falling across the viewing area moved very, very slowly. It was also heavy, falling at a rate of up to 1 or 2 inches an hour. At 8:15 a.m., the Triangle had already seen more than 1.5 inches of rain, with some areas seeing 2 or 3 inches.

Steady rain will continue all morning and for much of the afternoon.

The heaviest rain should be out of Chapel Hill and Durham by 11 a.m. and Raleigh by noon. By 1 p.m., the bulk of the heavy rain should be out of our area completely, Maloch said. However, scattered showers will be possible the rest of the day.

Wind speeds have decreased, so it's unlikely that more trees will fall, Gardner said.

After the heavy rain moves away, scattered rain will be possible throughout the day Thursday and into Friday morning.

7-Day Forecast

The weekend is shaping up to be sunny and warmer with highs in the mid 70s on Saturday and mid 80s on Sunday before a chance of rain returns on Monday.

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