This story has been updated to reflect that the flash flood watch now will take effect at 8 p.m. Tuesday instead of Wednesday morning.
COVINGTON, Ga. — Newton and surrounding counties will go under a flash flood watch with soaking rains expected to drench north Georgia on the first day of school.
The National Weather Service in Peachtree City said periods of heavy rainfall are likely Wednesday and Thursday as deep tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico streams northward across much of Georgia.
The flood watch will be in effect from Tuesday night through Thursday night. It includes most of north and middle Georgia, and flood watches have been issued in North Carolina and South Carolina.
On average, 2 to 4 inches of rainfall is expected within the watch area. However, locally higher amounts around 5 inches are possible across the higher terrain of north Georgia.
Wednesday will be the first day of school in the Newton County School System and Social Circle City Schools.
Several creeks and rivers could rise out of their banks, closing roads and having an impact on homes, businesses and farms. High water may not recede until well after the rain has ended.The forecast for Newton County calls for 70 percent chances of rain Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, a 60 percent chance of rain Friday, 40 percent chance Saturday and 30 percent chance Sunday.