Rain-soaked week will add to 2017's water surplus here - The Buffalo News

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Rain-soaked week will add to 2017's water surplus here

Lake Erie and Lake Ontario are about to put on more water.

Forecasts suggest one of the Buffalo Niagara region's driest starts to July is about to become one of its wettest in just a matter of days.

Expect clouds to increase as Monday afternoon wears on with rainfall expected by dinnertime. Some thunderstorms are also likely this evening, forecasts show.

Rainfall totals over a half-inch are forecast tonight. Mugginess will persist with temperatures only dropping into the upper 60s.

Showers and thunderstorms are in the forecast this evening, overnight and into Tuesday. (National Weather Service)

Warm and muggy conditions are forecast to continue Wednesday with daytime highs in the low 80s, with increasing chances for showers later in the evening.

More than an inch of more rain is expected between later Wednesday and Thursday morning with yet more showers and thunderstorms forecast.

Today's weather map. (National Weather Service)

In all, more than 2 inches of rain is forecast across the Buffalo Niagara region with even higher amounts – upward of 3 inches or more – to the west near Erie, Pa. and to the east near Syracuse, according to projections.

As if Lake Erie and Lake Ontario aren't high enough, most of Lake Erie will add 3 more inches this week from rainfall into its basin alone.

Lake Erie is just 8 inches off its all-time July water level, set in 1986, and more than 19 inches higher than its long-term average, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Lake Ontario is 2½ feet above its long-term average and is at its highest July average on record so far.

The first half of 2017 went down as the third-wettest on record at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, with more than 24 inches of total precipitation measured.

As of Monday, only 0.16 inch of rain was reported at the Buffalo airport, which is nearly three-quarters of an inch below average.

Conversely, only 10 times since World War II has 2.5 inches of rain fallen at the airport during the first two weeks of July, according to weather service records.

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