Storm leaves Durham drenched, causes crashes

Dec. 26, 2012 @ 06:19 PM

Durham got more than half its normal rainfall for December in a few hours Wednesday, but no major flooding was reported.

More than a dozen weather-related wrecks occurred in Durham between midnight and midafternoon Wednesday. No one was killed, but two people were hurt.

Durham County Sheriff Mike Andrews said his deputies responded to 12 accidents since midnight, when heavy rains started as a strong storm moved through the Triangle. Two of the accidents – on the Durham Freeway and Farrington Road – involved injuries, he said.

Eight accidents with only property damage happened in southern Durham, and two were in other parts of the county.

Capt. Galan King of the Durham Fire Department’s station on Riddle Road said firefighters responded to about six accidents Wednesday morning caused by “ponded water” – most on Interstate 40 and the Durham Freeway. He said they involved only property damage.

Meanwhile, the National Weather Service said Raleigh-Durham International Airport got 1.39 inches of rain between midnight and 3 p.m. Wednesday. The normal rainfall for December is 2.5 inches, according to Nick Petro, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s office at N.C. State University in Raleigh.

Petro said that before Wednesday’s storm, the area’s rainfall was about one-half inch below normal. He said the Durham area is now on track to be well beyond that by the end of the month.

Today’s forecast is for clear skies with winds gusts up to 40 miles per hour and a high of 50.

Friday is expected to be sunny, also with a high of 50, but “a very chilly rain” returns on Saturday, with a high in the mid-40s and low in the mid-30s, Petro said.

Rain ends Saturday night, and sunny skies return Sunday. A high in the mid-40s is predicted.