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Record July for rainfall in Worcester as Boston approaches historic mark

Marie T. Conserle kept dry from the rain while waiting for the bus on Blue Hill Avenue in Mattapan on Sunday.Christiana Botic for The Boston Globe

Massachusetts was drenched with heavy rains over the weekend that led to flooding in some areas, as Worcester set a new record for rainfall in the month of July.

The National Weather Service said 1.74 inches of rain fell in Worcester on Sunday, bringing the total to 12.67 inches for July, shattering the previous 11.24-inch mark set in 1938.

The new record could climb higher with two weeks left in the month and more rain in the forecast.

Boston is also on the cusp of a historic month for wet weather, with a total of 9.39 inches of rain so far. The city’s record for July is 11.24 inches, set a century ago in 1921.


Rainfall totals this month were spurred in part by Tropical Storm Elsa, which dropped 2.47 inches of rain on Worcester July 9 and 2.04 inches in Boston.

But it was the heavy rain on Saturday in Worcester that flooded city streets and left drivers stranded with their cars submerged windows-deep in floodwater. Saturday’s total was 2.27 inches of rain, according to data from the National Weather service.

Several communities across central Massachusetts, from the New Hampshire border down to Connecticut, were cleaning up Sunday, but only after another burst of rainfall hit the region Sunday morning.

In Orange, town officials declared a state of emergency on Sunday morning.

“We do have many streams and brooks that have overflowed, a few have resulted in road closures,” the Orange Fire Department said in a Facebook post. The post included a photo that showed water flowing freely across the surface of a bridge that was completely submerged near the intersection of Royalston and Mill Yard roads.

Some towns remained under flash flood warnings Sunday night. Parts of northern Franklin and Worcester counties, including the towns of Greenfield, Athol, and Turner Falls had a flash flood warning in place until 12:30 a.m. Monday, according to the weather service.


Is there more rain on the way? Probably.

Forecasters with the weather service say there will be a continued risk of showers and a few thunderstorms Monday, with heat and humidity briefly moving in Tuesday before more showers and thunderstorms roll in on Wednesday.

But forecasters are suggesting drier weather could be in the works as soon as the latter half of this week.

“There are signs that we may get into a drier pattern with odds favoring below to near normal temperatures,” the National Weather Service in Norton said in a tweet, inserting a “fingers-crossed” emoji.

Nick Stoico can be reached at Follow him @NickStoico.