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Manatee River water levels are rising. New flood warning in effect through Sunday

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The National Weather Service in Tampa is extending an earlier flood warning for the Manatee River to Sunday night with expectations flooding could occur by Friday afternoon.

As of Thursday morning, the river was at 9.4 feet and flood stage is 11 feet. Forecasters say the river will reach flood stage by Friday afternoon and exceed flood levels to 11.4 feet by Saturday morning.

At this time, minor flooding, particularly at the head of the river in Myakka City is expected.

Forecasters expect the river to fall below the 11-foot flood stage by Saturday evening, but the flood warning will remain in effect through Sunday.

Heavy rains, according to NWS, have affected a large swath of the Tampa Bay region in the past week. Roughly half of the area has seen more than 3 inches in the past week’s deluge.

Manatee County has seen a total of 12.5 inches of rain since Aug. 1, about 2.5 inches above the monthly average so far and averaging a full half-inch above the daily norm.

It’s not going to get any drier in the next couple of days with rain chances hovering above 60 percent Thursday and Friday. Chances begin to diminish somewhat beginning Saturday when the rain chance is currently listed at 40 percent. Rain chances continue to fall in the long-term forecast through next week and rise again the week after.

Breaking News/Real Time Reporter Mark Young began his career in 1996 and has been with the Bradenton Herald since 2014. He has won more than a dozen awards over the years, including the coveted Lucy Morgan Award for In-Depth Reporting from the Florida Press Club and for beat reporting from the Society for Professional Journalists to name a few. His reporting experience is as diverse as the communities he covers.
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