NORTHERN Territory officials are maintaining a flood watch on the Katherine River.
The Bureau of Meteorology expects a tropical low, which still may form into a cyclone, will bring heavy rain to the Katherine region over the weekend.
The town officially recorded 17.6mm overnight although town gauges recorded about double that.
Katherine has recorded 153mm for the year.
The total for the year is 600mm against 171mm at the same time last year.
The bureay says a tropical low has formed in the north of the Gulf of Carpentaria – there is a moderate chance of it developing into a tropical cyclone in the next few days.
“The tropical low is expected to move in a general south westerly direction towards the NT coast and then track west over or near the base of the Top End,” the bureau said.
“Whether or not a tropical cyclone forms, the system (combined with the active monsoon) is likely to bring more widespread rainfall across the Top End this weekend and into next week, with the possibility of severe weather warnings for heavy rain leading to flash flooding and damaging wind gusts.
“If the tropical low spends long enough over water and does develop into a tropical cyclone, it will bring an increased risk of strong winds over the weekend for parts of the eastern Top End coast south of Nhulunbuy.
“Additional heavy rainfall after the high totals from the current active monsoon will lead to stream rises, and there is an increased potential for flooding to occur across the Top End as we move into next week.”
The bureau said recent rainfall has led to river rises across the Top End, and a Flood Watch is current for the North West Coastal Rivers (including the Katherine, Daly and Adelaide rivers) and the Carpentaria Coastal Rivers (including the Waterhouse, Roper and McArthur rivers)
A Minor Flood Warning has been issued for the Daly River with the Daly River Police Station expected to exceed the minor flood level this afternoon – the river may reach moderate flood level during Sunday.
“We continue to monitor the Katherine and Waterhouse rivers closely, and a Minor Flood Warning is still current for Katherine River Gorge Road,” the bureau said.
”During the next couple of days widespread rainfall totals of 20-50mm are expected, with isolated heavier falls to around 100mm – later in the weekend rainfall totals are likely to ramp up with around 150mm in some locations, especially near the tropical low
Most locations in the Darwin area recorded rainfall totals of 50mm plus yesterday, and Darwin is currently tracking at its wettest wet season on record for the period 1 October to 9 February (the 2010/11 wet season between 1 October 2010 and 30 April 2011 was the wettest on record, and included Tropical Cyclone Carlos which impacted the area during February 2011).