Heavy weekend rain might not be enough to flood South Sound

Heavy rain is expected in the South Sound this weekend, but the region might avoid flooding forecast elsewhere in Western Washington.

“The bulk of the rain is just starting to come in,” National Weather Service meteorologist Kirby Cook said Thursday afternoon.

He expected the area to get about 3 inches of rain from Thursday to Saturday.

Between 4 p.m. Thursday and 4 p.m. Friday, winds were expected to reach 20 to and 35 miles per hour in Western Washington, with gusts up to 45 mph.

A wind advisory by the Weather Service warned of possible broken tree branches, power outages and difficult driving conditions.

Meteorologists also put out a flood watch from Thursday evening through Sunday morning, but Cook said rivers in Pierce and Thurston counties weren’t forecast to flood.

However, he said they’ll likely get close, and that South Sound residents should know flooding is possible.

“Most of the heavier rain is over the Olympics and North Cascades,” he said.

Warm weather will keep that rain from falling as snow in the mountains, but by Sunday lower temperatures could mean snow falling in the passes. Places like Paradise at Mount Rainier might get a couple inches to stick.

Temperatures on Friday could reach into the high 50s, with lows in the high 40s. By Sunday, the region will cool into the high 40s, and dip into the low 40s at night.

The recent stormy weather isn’t unusual for the season, Cook said, and is a product of warm, moist air that streams into the area from the west and southwest.

Monday should be drier, followed by another couple rainy days starting Tuesday.

“We’ll get a little bit of a break, but not a huge one,” Cook said.

Alexis Krell: 253-597-8268, @amkrell