- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 22, 2015

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Rain pounded Maine and New Hampshire on Tuesday and combined with melting snow to keep much of the two states under a flood watch as waves swept over some coastal streets.

The flood watch will stretch into Wednesday and is necessary because of continued rainfall that could last through early Friday, National Weather Service meteorologist Mike Kistner said. It applies to bodies of water such as rivers and streams in western and southern Maine and in all of New Hampshire except northern Coos County.

The worst of the rainfall passed through the area overnight and Tuesday morning, Kistner said. He said Falmouth, Maine, got a little more than 4.27 inches of rain, and other areas also approached 4 inches. Rain was compounded by coastal flooding in localized parts of southern Maine, Kistner said.

“There have been some bigger impacts from coastal flooding down in Wells and coastal York County,” Kistner said.

Waves crashed into transformers in Wells and caused them to spark, said Arthur Cleaves, director of the York County Emergency Management Agency. He said no major damage was reported in the county, but emergency workers are continuing to monitor for potential flooding in some areas.

“Inland, the waters have come up to half and sometimes three-quarters of flood levels,” Cleaves said.

There also is a river flood warning for the Kennebec River in effect from Skowhegan to North Sidney and south to Augusta, Kistner said. The Kennebec will likely crest around daybreak on Wednesday, he said. The weather service expects minor flooding, Kistner said.

The heavy, sustained rains are coming as the remaining snow and ice is melting around the state, which experienced a brutal winter of heavy snowfall. Kathleen Rusley, a spokeswoman for the Maine Emergency Management Agency, said state emergency officials are monitoring for flooding.

“A lot of rivers are getting close to a level when flooding could occur,” she said. “A whole lot of people are keeping a close watch.”

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