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Thunderstorms, flash flooding could occur today

— The National Weather Service has issued a hazardous weather outlook and flash flood watch for North-Central Washington.

The weather alerts, updated at 7:04 a.m. today, were issued in advance of heavy rains expected to develop over the North Cascade Mountains late this morning.

“This band will also contain some embedded thunderstorms with locally heavier rainfall rates that could lead to flash flooding,” the weather alert said. “Areas of greatest concert will be in and around recent burn scars from wildfires that burned in 2012, 2013 and so far into 2014.”

Meteorologists said residents of the Okanogan and Methow Valleys in the flash flood warning area, as is Bridgeport and Stehekin.

“Thunderstorms will continue to be possible over the area into the evening hours,” the Weather Service said.

Residents in the Carlton Complex wildfire area should be cognizant of the potential for flash floods along U.S. Highway 97 and state Highway 153.

A flash flood watch means conditions could lead to flash flooding and debris flows – as few as 10 minutes of heavy rainfall can cause flooding, the Weather Service said.

The hazardous weather outlook has been issued for most of Eastern Washington, including the Grand Coulee area, Waterville Plateau and Ferry County.

Heavy rainfall and thunderstorms could develop through today, the Weather Service said.

“Some thunderstorms may produce strong winds, small hail,” meteorologists said. “The greatest threat of storms comes between 1 p.m. and 9 p.m.”

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