Houston Weather: Soggy start to May leads to swollen waterways, record rainfall

Another round of downpours Tuesday lead to more flooding concerns across southeast Texas due to repetitive rain events over the last few weeks.


While Tuesday's rain was mostly focused south of I-10, storms near Bush Airport lead to a temporary ground stop, and a stationary severe storm near League City dropped several inches of rain and hail.

That brings month-to-rain totals up to the double digits in some spots. Palacios picked up over 11" of rain in May, and more than half of that fell in one day. 

On May 10, 2023, 6.21" of rain fell at that climate reporting site setting a new daily record. 

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Bush is sitting at just over 8.5", which is more than 3.5x the average thus far from 2.35". Both Hobby and Galveston are currently sitting at about double their norm.

With that being said, unsurprisingly we still have swollen waterways. The West Fork of the San Jacinto has crested and is now falling, meanwhile, the San Bernard River is forecast to crest tomorrow, and should gradually fall into a minor flood stage over the weekend.

While many others are near the flood stage, these are the two of the highest concern given that they are currently experiencing minor to moderate flooding. 

If you reside near rivers, creeks, streams, or bayous be sure to exert extra caution while walking near/around them especially with children pets, or the elderly as things continue to drain over the next few days. 

Additionally, an increase in mosquitos should be expected as a result of standing water.

On a positive note, reservoirs and year-to-date rainfall have received a boost from recent numbers with Hobby being the only climate reporting site still in a year-to-date deficit. 


Overlaying the current drought monitor, the patch of moderate drought near Matagorda Bay will likely see improvements by the next update on Thursday which will include rain received through Tuesday of this week.

More than half of Palacios' year-to-date rainfall has fallen in the month of May. Here are the current rainfall records. Despite the large quantities, Palacios may be the only site in jeopardy of losing its #1 spot.