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Weather for New Year’s Eve: Expect flooding from heavy rainfall

But it can change, as it often does…

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning that is in effect until this morning, although local meteorologist Elinor Lutu-McMoore says, “it may be extended.”

This is because the forecast places the South Pacific Convergence Zone (SPCZ) over the Samoan Islands through Saturday, New Year’s Eve.

As of press time yesterday afternoon, the local weather station had not received any reports of falling trees or landslides.

Lutu-McMoore said they are expecting flooding and heavy rainfall, especially in the town area. She added that moderate to fresh northwest winds – gusty at times — are expected to plague the territory, especially in the Pago Pago Harbor area because of down slope winds coming from the mountains.

Yesterday morning, the local weather station recorded almost an inch of rain in a span of three hours. “Of course, it could be higher elsewhere,” Lutu-McMoore pointed out.

She explained that the normal rainfall for the year is 133.93 total inches but as of 11 a.m. yesterday, the figure stood at 111.06 total inches, with still a couple more days left in 2016.

The normal rainfall for the month of December is 14.52 inches but as of yesterday, the local weather station recorded 11.21 inches for this month so far.

“The weather changes often and we advise local residents to continue to visit our website and stay tuned to local media outlets for weather updates, advisories, and warnings,” said Lutu-McMoore.

“If it is raining, please take an umbrella. Please heed all warnings and advisories and if there are thunderstorms, the best thing to do is to stay indoors.”

Things of interest that are worth reporting should be forwarded to the Emergency Operation Center (EOC) or the local Department of Public Safety.