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Midwest awash after heavy storms

Storms have continued to drench the US Midwest, which is already enduring record floods that are reported to have killed at least 25 people. States from Iowa to Texas have all been deluged. Early in the day on Friday, another band of thunderstorms dumped more rain on Missouri, Iowa and Wisconsin. The National Weather Service warned that Illinois residents could expect another 2in (5cm) of rain on Friday afternoon and evening. While some areas have seen the worst of the weather, with a high pressure system expected to dry things out over the weekend, others may still have more rain to come. "This is UNPRECEDENTED."

Weather Observations

WISCONSIN - The series of storms that has pummeled the Upper Midwest is part of a VERY UNUSUAL weather pattern. It only comes around once every 100 or 200 years. Energized by warm air and fueled by moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, the storms start in Nebraska and Iowa in the afternoon, roll through southern Minnesota and then into Wisconsin and Illinois. They've been running on schedule for six days. The storms had caused more than $48 million in damage in Wisconsin by Friday.

IOWA BROKE A 135 YEAR-OLD RAIN RECORD - The heavy thunderstorms that rumbled across southern Iowa Thursday night and Friday morning helped break an August record for Iowa precipitation that covers 135 years of statewide weather reports. As of 7 a.m.Friday, Iowa has had an average of 8.62 inches of statewide average rainfall, breaking the old mark of 8.24 inches set in 1993. The all-time mark for rainfall in any month in Iowa is 10.5 inches, set in the historic flood month of July 1993. �We had some incredible rain in southern Iowa last night [Thursday]. It was the biggest that we had yet out of this episode� of heavy Iowa rainfall over the past week. The National Weather Service is forecasting a chance of thunderstorms again Tuesday and Wednesday.

MINNESOTA - The rains that triggered widespread flooding in southeastern Minnesota last weekend SMASHED A STATE RAINFALL FRCORD FOR A 24-HOUR PERIOD. It broke the old record by more than 4 inches. The town of Hokah in Houston County had 15.1 inches of rainwater when measured at 8 a.m. Sunday morning. The previous record - set in July 1972 at Fort Ripley, Minn., in the central part of the state - was 10.84 inches. The state has had only three 24-hour rainfalls of 10 inches or more in the last 200 years.
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