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Melting snow, rain raise Pittsburgh's rivers

| Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013, 11:36 a.m.

Pittsburgh's three rivers are on the rise, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a flood advisory for the area.

Widespread rainfall since Wednesday coupled with unseasonably warm weather earlier this week causing rapid snow melt is causing significant rises on the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers, officials in the agency's Moon office said.

The Ohio River at Point State Park, Downtown, surpassed 18 feet Thursday, causing flooding at the Mon Wharf. The parking lot is closed. The Ohio River is expected to reach 22 feet and flood the 10th Street Bypass Thursday night. By Friday, it is expected to crest at 22.8 feet Friday afternoon and fall back below 18 feet Saturday night, forecasters said.

The Mon Wharf begins to flood at 18 feet and is completely submerged at 19.5 feet. Flooding along the lower areas of the North Shore River Walk is a foot deep when the Ohio River reaches 20 feet. Flooding of the 10th Street Bypass begins when the river reaches 22 feet. At 22.7 feet, the river floods the B&O Railroad on the North Side.

Flood stage is 25 feet. At 9 a.m., the river level was 17.8 feet, the agency reported.

The flood advisory for the head of the Ohio River is in place until Saturday night.

Jason Cato is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7936 or jcato@tribweb.com.

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