Rain Brings Minor Flooding to Part of Central N.C.

Meteorologists said Monday was the rainiest Christmas on record.

Posted Updated

RALEIGH, N.C. — Much of central North Carolina was under a flood watch Christmas Day as rain steadily fell in the area, causing minor flooding in some areas.

The watch area included Chatham, Cumberland, Durham, Harnett, Hoke, Lee, Moore, Orange, Scotland and Wake counties.

Some minor flooding was reported late Monday morning at Hope Valley Country Club in Durham, where high waters filled lawns and nearby roads. Levels receded and were closer to normal Monday night.

Steady rain also caused pockets of flooding in downtown Fayetteville and parts of Harnett County.

"This was the wettest December 25th since we've been keeping records in Raleigh," said Ron Humble, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

According to the National Weather Service, the rain was a result of a low-pressure area lifting north from the Gulf of Mexico.  Up to two inches of rain is expected in central North Carolina before moving out of the area Monday night.

The heaviest rain occurred between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Rain tapered off to areas of light rain or drizzle after 4 p.m.

The wet weather made driving treacherous. The Highway Patrol said there were 30 wrecks Monday, one of which was deadly. Officials said weather played a role in many of those crashes.

The wet weather was even blamed for dampening movie ticket sales. Christmas night is historically busy, but not this year.

"I would have liked the snow. I would have preferred the snow. It would have been better," said Guthrie Iddings, a movie patron.

Snow, not rain, will be posing travel hazards in some mountain counties Tuesday. A winter storm watch is in effect for some counties along the North Carolina-Tennessee border, with a dusting to 3 inches of snow possible in higher elevations.