Fox News Weather Center

Widespread Flood Threat Expected for Plains Through Midweek

The benign and drier weather pattern that was in place for the first part of June across the Plains has been replaced with a continuous flow of moisture into the region.

This weekend kicked off the start of a very wet period for the southern part of the country, with Daily Downpours Aggravating Flooding in Texas, Louisiana.

The National Weather Service in Houston, Texas received 6.71 inches of rain on Saturday, which was the highest 24 hour rainfall total received at the office that year. The second highest was 3.91 inches, which fell on March 21.

Many cities in the southern Plains received between 200-300 percent of normal rainfall during the month of May and were hit again with several rounds of rain and thunderstorms over the weekend. The ground in these regions is already very saturated, making additional rainfall nearly impossible to be absorbed into the soil.

This week looks to hold more of the same, with thunderstorms and periods of very heavy rainfall a near guarantee for many locations from eastern Texas through Oklahoma and into Kansas and Missouri.

High pressure is firmly in place over the Southeast and this is creating a persistent flow of tropical moisture over the Gulf of Mexico up into Texas and the Plains.

There is also the potential for a Tropical System to Develop in the Gulf This Week, which would aid in ushering in a plume of moisture to the region.

According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Brian Knopick, "The highest rainfall totals will be very dependent upon where the tropical system, or remnants of, move onshore in east Texas and west Louisiana."

"It looks like the highest totals will orient themselves from between Houston, Texas and Lafayette, Louisiana north into Texarkana to the southern and central Ozarks and middle Mississippi Valley," Knopick added.

These areas already received copious amounts of heavy rain back in May, so any additional rainfall to this magnitude can certainly result in flooding.

There is also a high threat for major river flooding this week in Texas and Louisiana. The Missouri River in Missouri, Trinity River in eastern Texas and the Red River in Louisiana are all at moderate to major stages of flooding.

Residents that live near those rivers will want to be on high alert for flooding and take necessary precautions to protect their property and have a plan in place if and when the waters begin to rise.

As we gear up for this week of very wet weather, it's important to take note of the difference between a Flash Flood Watch and a Flash Flood Warning.

A flash flood watch means to be prepared and that conditions are favorable for flash flooding to occur. It does not mean that flooding will occur but that it is possible.

A flash flood warning means that action needs to be taken and that flash flooding is imminent or already occurring. Residents living in a flood-prone region need to immediately move to higher ground.

The heaviest rainfall looks to come on Tuesday and Wednesday, with the threat beginning to lessen for the last few days of the week.