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May 8, 2009

Deluge struck 49 years ago

The weather forecast in The Sun called for "mostly cloudy with showers and cooler today ...clearing and cooler tonight." But what actually occurred was much, much wetter.

When it was all over, the rain that fell on Baltimore on May 8, 1960 came to 3.28 inches, still the record high precipitation for any day in May in Baltimore. An inch and a half fell in just two hours, between 8 and 10 p.m. Four inches fell out west in Cumberland

The rain caused severe flooding across the area. Sewers and strorm drains were not up to the task. Streets flooded and the water backed into basements. Five feet of rainwater flooded a trucking company on North Point Road, trapping several workers. They were rescued by boat.

Harbor Field/Pratt LibraryCars stalled in high water at several locations, including Ponca Street, Painters Mill Lane, Pot Spring Road. Runoff caused serious erosion on the slopes of Federal Hill Park in Baltimore.

The Potomac rose to flood stage at several locations. Loch Raven Reservoir rose 1.43 feet and began spilling over the dam. Ditto at Prettyboy.

Slippery conditions at the old Harbor Field Airport in Dundalk sent a DC-3 skidding off the runway into Colgate Creek during a landing. Six aboard were soaked, but unhurt. (The airport, once also a busy terminal for flying boats (photo), closed at the end of that year. It later became part of the Dundalk Marine Terminal.)

Posted by Frank Roylance at 2:46 PM | | Comments (0)
Categories: History

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About Frank Roylance
This site is the Maryland Weather archive. The current Maryland Weather blog can be found here.
Frank Roylance is a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. He came to Baltimore from New Bedford, Mass. in 1980 to join the old Evening Sun. He moved to the morning Sun when the papers merged in 1992, and has spent most of his time since covering science, including astronomy and the weather. One of The Baltimore Sun's first online Web logs, the Weather Blog debuted in October 2004. In June 2006 Frank also began writing comments on local weather and stargazing for The Baltimore Sun's print Weather Page. Frank also answers readers’ weather queries for the newspaper and the blog. Frank Roylance retired in October 2011. Maryland Weather is now being updated by members of The Baltimore Sun staff

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