The Washington region experienced extreme weather conditions including hailstones and heavy rain on Monday, earlier this week, amid the flashes of lightning and rumbling thunder storms driving eastward, prompting a flurry of flash flood warnings.
Late Monday night, a total of 1.75 inches of rain poured down at the Reagan National Airport within two hours and it was not clear how the streets drains could cope with that much downpour, with quantity equalling to that of some entire months in the region.
Meanwhile, a large part of the region stretching from Loudoun County, Va., on the west to the Baltimore area of Maryland on the east saw the rattling, clattering and thumping of hailstones.
Baseball-sized hail was reported in the Maryland towns of Rockville and St. Charles, according to NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center, and much of the area surrounding D.C. received hail in smaller sizes as the storms rolled through Monday night. There were few preliminary reports of hail damage.
There have been only eight reports of hail larger than baseballs in the state of Maryland since 1950, most recently hail up to four inches in diameter on June 23, 2015, according to NOAA records, said weather.com meteorologist Jon Erdman.
Winds gusted to 40mph and above in many places, according to reports by the National Weather Service.
In around an hour after 11 p.m., the storms seemed to reach the peak of their power, close to the district, as thunder resounded over the Potomac River and regular and repeated flashes of lightning seemed to make it look like daytime.
1.46 inches of rain fell between 11 p.m. and midnight at National Airport, site of official weather service measurements for Washington.
With the arrival of the storm, the temperatures plummeted down. At National, the temperature had dropped to 68 degrees by 11 p.m., A few hours prior to that, the temperature had been 20 degrees higher, with a peak of 89 recorded at 5:06 p.m.
The power went out in a minimum 2,000 homes and businesses innorthern Virginia, according to Dominion Energy figures. Power shortage was mostly in Baltimore where BGE reported that about 8,000 customers lacked power early Tuesday.
In it also reported that warnings regarding the storm had been issued well in advance of its arrival. Those residing in the district and keeping their own watches could see a weird and rapid turnabout in conditions overhead as the sun went down.
Earlier, the day seemed calm and meteorological conditions were positive. But at about the time the storm reached Fairfax County, dark clouds started appearing and surging into the skies of Washington. It could be said that the clouds awaited only sunset to begin their massive incursion from the northwest.
Only an hour before that, everything seemed normal with blue skies almost everywhere. Near dusk, high overhead, a faint crescent moon had been shining brightly and had the whole sky to itself. Atmospheric calm was prevalent.