Here are all of the models we are looking at for Saturday’s storm

Flash Flood Watch 4m to 7pm Saturday

Houston, TX – Models for tomorrow’s flooding are updating and I wanted to share with you some of what we are looking at here at the KPRC2 Severe Weather Center.

First, we always like to compare the Euro and American models and I can tell you that while the Euro does have a good reputation for more accuracy, the two are both strong. In fact, the Euro USES American satellite information so without the American influx of data, the Euro wouldn’t be where it is.

That aside, you can see they are both on track for 6-8″ of rain tomorrow in Southeast Texas although the American has a wider area for us:

Euro and GFS models

Another model, the GEM (Canadian) is also a reliable model and, likewise, centers heavy rain over us, very similar to the GFS (American):

Canadian Model

These above are Global Models and in similar agreement. There is also the NAM, which concentrates on just North America and, if it is correct, then this flood event will be a bust with only 1-2″ in our area:

North American Model

Two regional models we use all the time because they update often and have higher resolution are the RPM and HRRR. Those are on two different pages. The RPM has only 1-2″ of rain for Houston with perhaps 2-3″ in spots with more down south:


The HRRR on the other hand shows heavy rain south of I-10 and into downtown. I even see a 10″ spot in Ft Bend County:


So you see what we go through and why it’s wisest to go with the majority of models calling for a heavy rain event, along with what we DO know--a Low Pressure storm system will be moving across the state (exactly how fast and where is the challenge the models face), and the air is very saturated (hot and humid) and able to drop 6-8″ of rain pretty easily. When I look at models like this, I see guidance and that is why I think we all have to be very weather aware tomorrow for flooding. If we do not see heavy rain in southeast Texas then consider ourselves plain lucky.


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About the Author:

KPRC 2's chief meteorologist with three decades of experience forecasting Houston's weather.