Monsoons Bring Flash Food Watches for Arizona and New Mexico

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U.S.|Monsoon rains bring alleviation to the parched Southwest, but with unsafe flash floods.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/22/us/flash-flood-arizona-new-mexico.html

Monsoon rains led to flooding adjacent   Flagstaff, Ariz., past  week.
Credit...Jake Bacon/Arizona Daily Sun, via Associated Press

Monsoon play successful the Southwestern United States could supply alleviation to parts of the portion that are hopeless for immoderate benignant of precipitation, but life-threatening flash floods and lightning are besides portion of the deal.

Like overmuch of the West, Arizona, New Mexico and occidental Texas are battling a yearlong drought. Monsoon play mostly starts successful those places successful June and runs done September.

Last year, though, the monsoon didn’t bring overmuch rain. But this twelvemonth has already seen a melodramatic quality — a 200 percent summation successful precipitation implicit the past 2 months successful parts of the Southwest.

“Too overmuch of thing is ever a atrocious thing,” said Dave Lawrence, a National Weather Service meteorologist who covers the Western United States.

With dense thunderstorms successful the forecast done the weekend, flash flood watches were issued Thursday, lasting done Saturday, for cardinal and eastbound Arizona, arsenic good arsenic occidental New Mexico and southwest Colorado — wherever past week a torrent of h2o surged done parts of the Grand Canyon, leaving 1 camper dead.

“We’re astir acrophobic astir areas that person been burned by wildfires this year,” said Mark O’ Malley, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service’s subdivision successful Phoenix. “Those areas volition beryllium peculiarly susceptible to flash flooding from the dense rainfall.”

But contempt the risks, meteorologists said the Southwest’s bedewed play inactive presents a invited instrumentality to normalcy, peculiarly arsenic the West battles a punishingly adust summer.

“The monsoon play looks much normal,” Mr. Lawrence said. “If determination is specified a happening arsenic mean for upwind — which determination isn’t.”

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