Rain, thunderstorms moving through area Saturday afternoon

    Moderate to heavy rain and isolated thunderstorms are triggering ahead of a cold front this afternoon, according to radar imagery at 2 p.m.

    Earlier, the National Weather Service issued a Special Weather Statement advising of the thunderstorm threat, noting that strong winds are possible and a slight risk exists for severe thunderstorms in extreme southeast New Jersey. But strong wind gusts that “could easily reach 30 to 40 mph” are possible even without the thunderstorms, “especially along the immediate coast,” the service advises. 

    Most areas will see 1 to 1.5 inches of rainfall, with isolated 2 inches possible, forecasters advise. River flooding is also a concern. 

    “Moderate to major river flooding is possible where ice jams form, but it is impossible to predict in advance where these may occur,” a weather briefing issued by the service yesterday warns. “Rivers could rapidly rise to moderate or major flooding levels behind an ice jam with little or no warning. Flooding is also possible downstream from ice jams if they break suddenly.”

    Forecasters encourage everyone who lives along a river or stream to monitor the flooding situation here.

    While heavy rain remains a threat through the evening hours, conditions will begin to improve overnight as the cold front heads out to sea, according to the service. Forecasters say that conditions tomorrow will be brisk and dry. 

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