The warning, which went into effect at 6 p.m. Monday, includes Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Clarion, Greene, Indiana, Jefferson, Lawrence and Washington counties in Pennsylvania. The warning extends until 11:45 a.m. Tuesday.
The National Weather Service is warning that flooding could hit small streams and urban areas.
Port Authority Storm Update: There are currently no storm-related impacts to transit service, and the system is operating under normal conditions. Port Authority has no plans to shut down its system or otherwise significantly alter service at this time.
The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch and high wind warning for Western Pennsylvania—including Allegheny, Beaver and Butler counties— as Hurricane Sandy brings high winds and rain across the vicinity.
The wind warning cautions residents to be prepared for winds of 25 to 30 mph, with gusts up to 60 mph. It is in effect until noon Tuesday.
Wind gusts are likely to be strongest Monday night into Tuesday morning before decreasing through the day Tuesday.
"High wind will bring down trees and power lines. Lightweight objects such as trash cans, deck furniture and anything else should be secured," the National Weather Service website states. "Use extreme caution while driving, especially when crossing bridges and overpasses."
That warning also covers eastern Ohio, northern West Virginia and western Maryland.
The flood watch is in effect through Tuesday night for all of Western Pennsylvania as well as east-central Ohio, West Virginia and western Maryland. The watch means that flooding may result from heavy rain due to a stalled cold front and the aftermath of Sandy.
Communities along streams or with poor drainage may experience flooding if more than two inches of rain fall Monday and Tuesday, according to the weather service. The region's rivers also may be at risk for flooding if heavy rain is widespread through the region.
A watch means flooding is possible but not a certainty.
Flood Advisory for Ohio River
The National Weather Service issued a flood advisory for the Ohio River from Tuesday evening to Thursday afternoon.
“Widespread heavy rains are expected to blanket the region over the next 36 hours with potential rainfall amounts during the period ranging from 2.50 inches to 4.50 inches.”
The runoff from the heavy rainfall will cause significant rises on the Monongahela River, which will impact the Ohio River at The Point in Pittsburgh beginning Tuesday evening, the weather service states.
A flood advisory means river or stream flows are elevated or ponding of water in urban or other areas is occurring or is imminent.
At 11 a.m. Monday, the stage was 16.6 feet; the flood stage is 25.0 feet. The weather service forecasts the river will rise to near 22.3 feet early Wednesday afternoon.
The National Weather Service noted:
- At 18.0 feet, the Mongahela River parking wharf begins to flood.
- At 22.0 feet, the Tenth Street Bypass floods.
- At 25.0 feet, the Parkway Central or the bathtub begins to flood.
Allegheny County Emergency Operations Center's Chief Alvin Henderson said all local emergency management coordinators have been given information about the storm and plans.
Henderson is urging residents to stock up on necessary items should a storm hit. He said residents should have on hand:
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- Portable, battery-operated radio and extra batteries
- First aid kit and manual
- Emergency food and water
- Non-electric can opener
- Essential medicines/prescriptions
- Cash, credit cards and important legal documents
- Sturdy shoes
For more information on how to make a disaster supply kit and how to prepare for all kinds of disasters, visit www.alleghenycounty.us/emerserv/preparelinks.aspx.
Here's a look at the Pine-Richland area forecast from the National Weather Service:
- This Afternoon—Rain. High near 44. Breezy, with a north wind 18 to 21 mph, with gusts as high as 41 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.
- Tonight—Rain. The rain could be heavy at times. Low around 43. Windy, with a northwest wind 32 to 36 mph, with gusts as high as 55 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between 1 and 2 inches possible.
- Tuesday—Rain. The rain could be heavy at times. High near 46. Windy, with a northwest wind 25 to 30 mph decreasing to 17 to 22 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 50 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.
- Tuesday Night—Rain. Low around 38. North wind 13 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 26 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New precipitation amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.
- To track the hurricane's path, click here.
Keep checking back with Pine-Richland Patch for more details as they become available. If you haven't done so already, this is a real good time to "like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to keep up with what is going on.