Sea of Galilee notches highest one-day rise of season

Heavy rains expected throughout country Wednesday and Thursday

Cars drive in the rain in Tel Aviv on November 25, 2014. (photo credit: Flash90)
Cars drive in the rain in Tel Aviv on November 25, 2014. (photo credit: Flash90)

Torrential rains continued to sweep across much of the country overnight Tuesday into Wednesday morning, raising the levels of the Sea of Galilee by 3.5 centimeters (1.37 inches).

It marked the highest one-day rise of the season so far for the northern lake, one of Israel’s key water sources.

However, the center of the country received the highest concentration of rain, with Petah Tikvah seeing the most at 105 millimeters (4 inches). Jerusalem received 35 millimeters (1.4 inches), Tel Aviv 25 millimeters (1 inch) and Ashkelon 55 millimeters (2.2 inches).

Occasional rain and isolated thunderstorms are expected to continue throughout Wednesday and into the Thursday, bringing strong winds, unseasonably cool temperatures, possible flooding and snow on Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights, according the Israel Meteorological Service.

The wind will likely die down on Thursday, but cool temperatures and rain will likely persist before tapering off on Friday.

Winter rains are vital for Israel’s water reserves, and this winter is off to a good start.

The Tel Aviv region has already received 37 percent of its annual average and Beersheba 25%. The area around the Sea of Galilee has seen one-fifth of its yearly total. Jerusalem is lagging behind with 13%. The totals are well ahead of the average rainfall for this point in the year.

Tel Aviv has seen more than double the average precipitation for this point in the year, while Haifa has received 150%. Jerusalem is also enjoying a relatively wet winter, and stands at 136% of the average so far.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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