Risk of Flooding from Missouri to Michigan

Last year, much of the Midwest was bracing for a rough ride with building heat and drought.

The year before, the story was record-challenging flooding.

This year, concerns have again flipped to flooding. Areas with an ongoing or developing flood potential extend from portions of northern Arkansas and Missouri to Michigan.

Late winter and early spring storms have made up for snow and rain deficits, pushing streams to bank full and have major rivers running well above their near-record lows from the start of the year.

There have already been some flooding incidents and more are possible over the next couple of weeks.

Factoring in the rain that fell to start the week, and what may fall through the balance of the week, some locations may rack up 3 to 6 inches of rain during the period from Monday through Friday.

This amount of rain will be enough to push some streams and rivers out of their banks. Flooding is possible along some unprotected areas.

Some of the rivers that may have flooding problems include the Illinois in Illinois, the Wabash in Indiana and Illinois, the Grand in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan and the Rock in Wisconsin.

Minor flooding is also forecast along portions of the upper Mississippi River.

Flooding along the Red River (of the North) is contingent upon how quickly existing snow cover melts over the next few weeks. If melting snow is accompanied by rain and sudden warmth, major flooding is possible in this basin.

In addition to stream and river flooding, the ground can hold little moisture in some areas and can rapidly shed rainfall in the form of flash and small stream flooding.

The combination of lingering chill and now frequent rainfall has spring planting well behind last year's pace. However, many farmers will gladly trade extreme drought all season long with minor flooding problems early in the season.

The persistent rainfall and recent snowfall in the region will work to help add water to the Great and lesser lakes and reservoirs in the region.