A Look Back at the Rainfall from Hurricane Harvey (credit: National Weather Service)
DISCUSSION: Across both the United States as well as the global atmospheric science research community, there is no question that Hurricane Harvey dumped a substantial amount of storm total rainfall across parts of southeast (SE) Texas upon making landfall back in late August of 2017. However, one of the microcosms of this tropical cyclone-induced flooding event was the fact that a good portion of the event rainfall totals across SE Texas happened after Harvey fell below the threshold of being a hurricane. Thus, the landfall and post-landfall phases of Hurricane Harvey proved to be incredibly life-threatening for many people living across SE Texas. Moreover, the bulk of the total tropical cyclone-induced rainfall came after the point at which Hurricane Harvey was downgraded Tropical Storm Harvey.
Having said that, one of this main issues which impacted this particular land-falling tropical cyclone event was the fact that the core circulation of Harvey rapidly intensified just before impacting a densely populated area of SE Texas for a prolonged period of time. This rapid intensification ultimately prolonged both the intensity as well as the organizational symmetry of the associated spiral rainfall bands tied to Hurricane Harvey. As was quoted by a number of experienced meteorologists (i.e., both forecasters and broadcasters alike) from across parts of SE Texas, the severity of the rainfall totals submitted from across that region clearly overachieved the expected rainfall totals from this historic tropical cyclone-base event. Further, it was found to be a rather historic flooding event since Harvey meandered around SE Texas for a while and the accumulated rainfall amounted so much pressure on the surface that satellite observations confirmed a slight lowering of the ground as shown in the following link.
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© 2018 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz