Flood warning issued in area

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Sounds like a symphony of rainsticks out there — for good reason — and North Idaho could break its record for most precipitation in February.

All that rain is causing reports of flooding and damaged roads around the region, prompting a flood warning for the region, including Bonner, Boundary and Kootenai counties.

Since Feb. 1, Coeur d’Alene had gotten 4.76 inches of precipitation, Press meteorologist Randy Mann said Thursday afternoon. He said that could increase to 5 inches by the time you read this story. Sandpoint received about 1.67 inches of rain on Thursday alone.

“The all-time record is 6.49 inches set in 1940,” Mann said. “If we get another inch and a half of moisture, we’ll do it.”

As of 4 p.m. Thursday, Mann said the storm had spit out 1.56 inches of rain, and it was still coming down.

Moving into the weekend, Mann said there could be a small break from the rain later in the day today, but starting late tonight, Coeur d’Alene will see a mix of rain and snow, on and off, throughout the weekend.

Even more precipitation is expected next week, but “I don’t think it will be as intense as this week,” Mann said.

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning due to rain and snowmelt in the region. The warning is in effect until 11:15 a.m. Friday, Feb. 17.

Local law enforcement officials are reporting numerous flood problems across eastern Washington and North Idaho from the combination of heavy rain, snow melt, and clogged culverts, according to the National Weather Service. Several roads are experiencing some degree of flooding and motorists are urged to use caution when they see water over the road.

Flooding problems were expected to continue through the day as additional light rain falls combined with delayed runoff from overnight rains and melting snow.

There have been several reports of damaged roads from flooding Thursday, NWS officials said in the Nixle report. Residents are urged to use caution if they come across a flooded road and to not drive through the flood waters unless they are certain it is safe and passable.

Additional rainfall amounts near a quarter of an inch will be possible by Friday morning with locally up to half an inch. Drier weather is expected to return to the region Friday.

Staff writer Caroline Lobsinger contributed to this report. She can be reached at clobsinger@bonnercountydailybee.com or @CarolDailyBee on Twitter.

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