With mild temperatures reaching the lower 50's today combined with pouring rain through the afternoon hours today, the Berkshires and surrounding areas are under a flood watch from 7 am this morning through 7am tomorrow (Wednesday) morning.

Take it easy when driving especially this morning because not only will you have the obstacle of heavy rain to deal with there's also fog in the forecast which will weaken visibility, a dicey combination.

AccuWeather also reports that rainfall amounts of three quarters of an inch to an inch and a quarter along with snowmelt today may be enough to dislodge river ice which would then move downstream and potentially jam at preferred locations. Areas in the river channels which are most prone to ice jam flooding include obstructions in the channel such as islands, locks, bridge piers and docks; changes in the channel such as narrowing of the channel, bends, gorges and intact ice cover; change in channel depth from deep water to shallow water; and merger of river channels.

Related to this issue, in a recent article from the Berkshire Eagle, it was reported that there were concerns among safety responders in the town of Stockbridge, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation and Berkshire Gas Company due to large chunks of ice backing up a portion of the Housatonic river near the South Street Bridge on the morning of January 13th. In anticipation of potential flooding, the town's emergency management director Christopher Marsden issued a reverse 911 call to residents of Stockbridge to notify them of the situation.

Stay Safe and Informed!

You should monitor later forecasts and be alert for possible Flood Warnings. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action should flooding develop.

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