Flash Flooding Possible for Areas East of I-35 as Tropical Depression Bill Keeps Moving
Wednesday 4 p.m. Some heavy rainfall hit the Austin area this afternoon, and the National Weather Service has issued a flash flood warning that will remain in place until 6:45 p.m.
Wednesday 4:30 a.m. The University of Texas at Austin has announced it will re-open at 7:00 a.m. Wednesday morning and will operate on a regular schedule. Travis County offices will operate on a normal schedule today. City of Austin offices will be back on a regular schedule today. Since the Austin area was not hard hit by Tropical Depression Bill, Capital Metro expects all routes to run on regular schedules today. Hays CISD and Leander ISD will operate on their normal summer schedules today.
All Austin Community College campuses and centers will open and operate on a regular schedule today.
1:15 a.m. The National Weather Service has canceled the flash flood warning that was in effect for Travis, Williamson and Bastrop counties.
12:30 a.m. Bill's strength continues to diminish as it moves inland, says the National Weather Service. Rain is coming down now at a rate of an inch per hour in some parts of Central Texas.
Radar estimated rainfall now generally less than an inch per hour. #Bill continues to weaken as it moves farther inland. #txwx— NWS Austin/San Antonio (@NWSSanAntonio) June 17, 2015
12:20 a.m. National Weather Service says that now Bill is centered over Bastrop County and is starting to move north. It's raining in Austin, but no reports yet of torrential downpours in the city.
11:20 p.m. Winds are picking up in Austin. A flood warning has been issued for Austin and Travis County. It remains in place until 2:15 a.m.
#ATXWX ALERT: Flash Flood Warning now in effect for A/TC til 2:15am. Warning means threat is imminent. Be prepared & stay safe!— ATCEMS (@ATCEMS) June 17, 2015
9:15 p.m. Officials in East Bastrop County report that heavy rain is now moving into the area. Both Bastrop and Lee Counties have issued flash flood warnings.
Update 7:45 p.m. Though serious rain has yet to hit central Austin, the National Weather Service says that the area can expect "torrential downpours" just a little later tonight.
Re-intensification of updrafts within #Bill as seen on IR satellite. Torrential downpours can be expected! #txwx pic.twitter.com/6VpuldJNiL— NWS Austin/San Antonio (@NWSSanAntonio) June 17, 2015
The showers and storms forecast for the next few days are moving into the Austin area, and Travis County and surrounding areas are under a flash flood watch until 1 p.m. Thursday. The National Weather Service also issued a tornado watch for Austin and areas east of the city, and that remains in effect until midnight tonight.
Tropical Storm Bill made landfall just before noon on the Texas coast, and that storm is bringing heavy rain and strong winds to the Austin area. The center of the storm will track into Central Texas this evening and tonight, lasting through sometime Wednesday. Forecasters expect Austin to get three to six inches of rainfall.
For road closures, atxfloods.com has up-to-date information. Austin Police are also tweeting about road closures in the area, which as of 9 p.m. include several crossings along Spicewood and Lakewood.
This post will be updated throughout the weather.
The National Weather Service says that some areas in south central Texas could see as much as 8 to 12 inches as the storm moves north from the coast Tuesday and Wednesday.
The City of Austin will send employees home at 3 p.m. this afternoon, and the University of Texas announced that it's closing at 5 p.m. today. ACC closes today at 3 p.m. as well.
Capital Metro says riders should anticipate delayed services during severe weather. Riders can check Capital Metro’s Service Alerts at capmetro.org for updates, or Facebook and Twitter.
For Austin Energy customers experiencing power outages during weather events, you can report that online and find more information here or call 512-322-9100. Oncor customers can use this website or call 888-313-4747.
When flash flooding occurs, low road crossings often close, so check atxfloods before heading out on the roads. You should not try to drive over flooded crossings ("turn around, don't drown").
You can see watches, warnings and advisories on this weather map. If you see flooding, downed trees or other damage in your area, you can dial 3-1-1 or use the Austin 311 app to report it.
Caldwell County officials have banned "non-essential travel on surface streets" tonight from 10:30 p.m. to 7 a.m. because of flood risk. Update 9:30 p.m. County officials rescinded the travel ban because the storm track for TS Bill moved sufficiently to the east, lowering the risk of extreme flooding.
Towns that were hit hard by flooding in late May, like those in Hays County, may get hit again by this storm system, potentially slowing the recovery process.
The Red Cross has opened two emergency shelters in Central Texas:
Working closely with Emergency Management and other community partners, the American Red Cross has opened shelters for anyone impacted by severe weather and flash flooding in Central Texas. Anyone in need of shelter is encouraged to go to a shelter listed below or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. Shelters are open at the following locations: Lee County: Giddings Middle School, 2335 N. Main St., Giddings, TX Caldwell County: Luling Jr. High School, 212 S. Hackberry, Luling, TX
We will update this post as weather develops.