Floods no stranger to Rome but it won’t happen with Harvey remnants
The National Weather Service is now predicting two to three inches of rain for the Rome area.
Rome is in line to feel the remnants of Hurricane Harvey today and possibly into Friday, but the outer rain bands from the storm that devastated Texas are not likely to leave a lasting impression on Rome — certainly not in the same manner that Hurricane Opal did in 1995.
The storm that dumped more than 50 inches of rain in the Houston area could drop two to three inches of rain in the Rome area, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Sid King in the Peachtree City office. Opal set daily rainfall records for Rome on two consecutive days, Oct. 4- 5, 1995. The official gauge at Richard B. Russell Regional Airport registered 4.94 inches of rain on Oct. 4 and another 4.08 inches the following day.
King explained by
Tarps strain under the load on Sept. 6, 2011, after Model High was flooded by heavy rain.
the time this storm gets across Northwest Georgia the rain bands are not feeding off Gulf moisture any more. “This time of year those Gulf waters are like a bathtub, there is so much moisture and instability that can contribute to those,” King said. “Once that source is cut off, it loses its support to produce those kinds of rains.”
According to the Southeast Regional Climate Center, based at the Uni- File / Rome News-Tribune
versity of North Carolina, the largest daily rainfall amount reported in Rome was 6.67 inches recorded on Oct. 26 of 1997
Seven times since 1893, Rome has picked up more than five inches of rain in one day; the most recent time that occurred was Sept. 5, 2011, when the area received 5.25 inches of rain, according to the Georgia Automated Weather Service. That gauge is located off Bells Ferry Road
Perhaps the most famous flood occurred in 1886. Heavy rains from March 30 — April 2 resulted in historic flooding and an Oostanaula River crest of 40.3 feet. A second major flood occurred in 1892 when the river crested at 37.2 feet. Those events led to the decision to raise the ground level of buildings on Broad Street.
Major flood events also occurred in 1916, 1932 and again in 1936 before the H. H. Keel levee system was completed in 1939. The most recent major flooding occurred in 1990 when the river crested at 34.2 feet.
Rome Public Services Director Kirk Milam said the completion of the South Rome levee in the 1980s was also critical for the protection of a largely residential area. “It has helped us weather some real serious flooding issues on the Coosa River without damaging those homes,” Milam said. “That’s a pretty substantial area from Branham Avenue down to Wilson Avenue.”
King, at the National Weather Service, said there should not be any real concerns about major flooding from this event in the Rome area.