Skip to main content Salem once held a festival to celebrate the lack of measurable rain on July 12. Capi Lynn, Statesman Journal A surprise thunderstorm swept through the Salem area Tuesday afternoon, dumping rain and causing minor flooding. The National Weather Service issued a flood advisory throughout the Willamette Valley for Tuesday afternoon into the evening. The advisory was in effect from around 3 p.m. until 5:45 p.m. for several counties including Marion and Polk counties. One of the most active systems originated just north of Salem, according to Dave Elson, a meteorlogist with the National Weather Service in Portland. It moved south into the city around 4 p.m. Rainfall rates in the heaviest showers throughout the valley were as high as one-half to three-quarters of an inch in 30 minutes, according to the advisory . Additional scattered showers producing up to an inch of rain in an hour were expected through 6 p.m. Salem Police officers were called out on two traffic assists between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. because of flooding, […]