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Humberto expected to douse Valley

By Seth Burkett 340-2355

Leftovers from Tropical Storm Humberto may mean as much as an inch of rain for Decatur.

Unlike the recent isolated afternoon thunderstorms, Thursday's system is expected to bring steady and widespread rainfall.

Kris White, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Huntsville, said it appears a one-half inch to an inch of rain will fall across the Tennessee Valley starting in the evening.

"It's not going to be enough to break the drought around here, but at this point everything helps," White said. "At this point, it looks like a good, heavy, steady rain event."

Humberto remained 50 miles south of Galveston at 4 p.m. White said forecasters expected the storm to make landfall on the east Texas or Louisiana coast, dumping as much as 15 inches of rain in some spots.

White said whether Decatur receives more or less rain than projected "depends on the exact direction that system takes, but it looks like it's heading toward the Tennessee Valley."

"Probably the bulk of the precipitation will fall during the late morning and afternoon hours Friday," White said. "It probably will be coming to an end Friday night. Saturday and Sunday both look like very pleasant days. We've got a good cold front coming through and probably the best weather we've seen in a while."

Highs around 80 and lows in the 50s will be a pleasant change from the triple-digit temperatures endured throughout much of August, he said.

The area remains under an exceptional drought, the worst classification used by the U.S. Drought Monitor. On Wednesday, Huntsville remained behind on yearly average rainfall by 20.76 inches.

According to the National Weather Service, Decatur received one-half inch of rain so far this month and about 11/2 inches in August.

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