Strong fall storm prompts flash flood warning for Washington County, Zion

Minor flooding at Snow Canyon State Park following rainfall in Washington County, Utah, March 2, 2019 | File photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Heavy precipitation has prompted officials from National Weather Service in Salt Lake City to issue a flash flood warning for east central Washington County in southwestern Utah until 5 p.m. Sunday.

Shaded areas denote regions subject to flash flood watch. | Image courtesy of the National Weather Service, St. George News

According to the National Weather Service website, at approximately 1:56 p.m., flash flooding was reported by park rangers in Zion National Park. Officials expect slot canyons and washes within the park to continue to see flash flooding conditions through late afternoon.

More rainfall is expected and authorities recommend remaining alert for flooding, even in locations that are not currently receiving precipitation.

Flash flooding is a rapid and extreme water flow of high water in a normally dry area. It is one of the most common hazard in the United States.

“Dry washes, streams and rivers can become raging killer currents in a matter of minutes, even from distant rainfall” the website stated. “It is important to know where you are relative to streams, rivers, or creeks which can become killers in heavy rains.”

Flooding is occurring now or is imminent. Campers and hikers are advised to seek higher ground and to avoid streams or creeks while the warning is in place.

As with any flood emergency, stay tuned to official weather reports via radio, television and social media. Cell phone users can also sign up to receive weather alerts as text messages. You can also follow St. George News and Cedar City News for weather alerts and updates relevant to Southern Utah.

For the most current conditions, warnings and advisories, go to the National Weather Service-Salt Lake City office website. Additional information on winter driving can be found at the UDOT website, as well as UDOT’s Commuterlink for current road and weather conditions, or dial 511.

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Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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