The National Weather Service in Raleigh on Sunday continued a flood watch through Tuesday morning for central North Carolina.
Heavy rain was expected for central North Carolina through Tuesday, with totals expected between 3 and 5 inches, with some areas receiving as much as 6 inches.
The Raleigh and Durham areas were expected to get just under 4 inches, while the Smithfield and Johnston County areas were expected to see just more than 4 inches.
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Showers were expected to increase in intensity on Sunday, covering nearly all of the central part of the state through Monday night.
Risk of flooding was highest from the Triangle west and south, including the Triad, southern Piedmont, Sandhills and southern Coastal Plain.
Creeks were expected to rise rapidly and water may fill and spill out of drainage ditches.
Driving may be treacherous due to standing water on roads, especially low spots and areas with poor drainage, flowing water across roads and heavy rain reducing visibility. The weather service asked people to allow extra travel time Sunday through Monday night.
Duke Energy reported several small power outages Sunday morning, from Winston-Salem to Goldsboro, but it was unclear whether any were from storm damage.
Some storm damage was seen overnight in Raleigh, including large branches down in Cameron Park.
The severe weather is from a cold front that settled south through southern Virginia into North Carolina on Saturday. The front stalled over southeastern North Carolina by Sunday in advance of a slow-moving area of low pressure that was expected to track along the coast of the Carolinas through Monday night.
Sunday was expected to see a high of 59 with wind gusts as high as 20 mph. The low was expected at 54 degrees. Monday should be slightly warmer with a high of 64 degrees and calmer winds. Thunderstorms may be possible Monday night into early Tuesday morning beginning at about 3 a.m. The low Monday night was expected to be 56 and wind gusts as high as 24 mph were expected.
Showers and possible thunderstorms are expected Tuesday morning before 9 a.m. followed by more rain through early Tuesday night before the sun returns with a high of 79 on Wednesday.
N.C. Emergency Management warned that main-stem rivers will see significant rises by Monday, including the Yadkin, Haw, Neuse, Tar, Roanoke and Cape Fear.
The weather service reported Sunday that no flooding was expected on main-stem rivers in central North Carolina with the exception of the Haw at Bynum, which had about a 50 percent chance of rising to minor flood stage as of Sunday morning.
Strong winds were expected to develop and contribute to dangerous rip currents and high surf on the coast.
The heaviest rain was expected to move offshore by Tuesday.
The weather service in Wilmington issued a flash flood watch for southeast North Carolina and northeast South Carolina on Sunday until Tuesday morning.
Rainfall associated with a developing low pressure system was expected to become widespread and heavy late Sunday night and persist into early Tuesday. Heavy rain will contribute to total rainfall of 3-6 inches, with isolated higher amounts possible.
The ground will become saturated as rain moves across the area, according to the weather service. This has the potential to lead to flash flooding, especially in locations with poor drainage such as urban areas or in and around culverts. Excessive roadway ponding is also likely, and some roads may become impassable, especially if drainage ditches overflow.
An isolated storm or two is possible Monday afternoon and evening over southeast North Carolina, mainly along and southeast of a line from Raeford to Fayetteville to Goldsboro. Strong damaging wind gusts and hail will be possible.
Abbie Bennett: 919-836-5768; @AbbieRBennett