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Germantown Area Under Flood Watch, Flood Warning for Seneca Creek

The Germantown area has been getting a lot of rain this week and the wet stuff will continue for the next few days, be prepared and understand how to react to possible flooding.

The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Watch for the Germantown area and all of Montgomery County from Friday morning through Saturday morning as the rain continues to fall over the region. “Periods of rain will continue across the region through at least Friday,” according to the NWS. “This rain will be heavy at times, with overall additional rainfall totals of 3- to 5- inches. While flash flooding cannot be ruled out, the primary concern is flooding of small streams and low-lying areas. Streams are already elevated and soils saturated from earlier rainfall, increasing the flood threat.”

The NWS has also issued a Flood Warning for the southwestern portion of Seneca Creek near Dawsonville until late Saturday night, May 19. “Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action should flooding develop,” said the NWS.

At 3:00 pm on Thursday the creek was 4.4 feet and steady. Flood stage is 7.5 feet. The creek is forecast rise above flood stage by early tomorrow afternoon and crest near 8.4 feet by Saturday morning. The river will fall below flood stage by early Saturday evening. The NWS reports that at 7.5 feet portions of the Seneca Creek Greenway will flood and portion of Berryville Road west of Darnestown begins to flood.

On July 29, 2017, Seneca Creek hit a previous crest of 8.9 feet, according to the National Weather Service.

The Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service urges residents to be alert to changing weather conditions and should be prepared for possible flooding.

“Much of the state has already experienced heavy rain and flooding and these conditions are predicted to continue for the next several days,” said Maryland Governor Larry Hogan. “It is essential that everyone continue to monitor forecasts this week, prepare your homes and families for more rain, and avoid driving during thunderstorms. Remember – turn around, don’t drown!”

MCFRS offers a number of tips:

Never drive through a flooded road or bridge.

Turn Around - Don’t Drown and try an alternate route. In many cases, it takes far less than a foot of water to incapacitate a vehicle. It may stall, leaving you stranded, and depending on the level of water, you may not be able to open a vehicle door.

Do not underestimate the power of moving water.

Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars causing loss of control and possible stalling.

One foot of water will float many vehicles.

Two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles including sport utility vehicles and pick-ups.