Saturday, May 25, 2024

A crowd at Lechmere waits to cross the street in heavy rain. Cambridge has been beset by rain throughout the year, including over the past four days. (Photo: Marc Levy)

Four days of rain ending midday Wednesday didn’t give Cambridge flood problems like those experienced as recently as July 10, said John Nardone, assistant commissioner for operations at the city’s Department of Public Works.

The trick? The rain never came down so strongly that it fully overwhelmed drainage systems, although there were times catch basins backed up a bit, Nardone said Wednesday.

There were 4.5 inches of rain since Sunday recorded at Logan Internatioal Airport, according to the National Weather Service. Hardest hit was the Blue Hills, with 7.5 inches recorded, and Salem followed at 6 inches.

“We have not seen any damage. This was light rain over a long period, so there were no real problems,” Nardone said.

The rain was particularly fierce Wednesday morning but finally petered out at around noon.

While Alan Dunham, of the National Weather Service in Taunton, acknowledged “it helped that it was spread out over four days,” he didn’t think the rains were uniformly as mild as Nardone suggested.

“I don’t know if I’d categorize it as light,” Dunham said.

Cambridge has been beset by rain and flooding at scattered dates throughout the year, with persistent problems in the Fresh Pond area. The July rains — 3.5 inches in an hour — brought thigh-high waters in Central Square, causing damage there and in Kendall Square, where businesses were forced into emergency shutdowns. But that intense rainfall was called an anomaly, and this week’s weather didn’t match up.

“We continue to watch over the system and will respond as best we can,” Nardone said.

Thursday is expected to be partly sunny, with highs around 80, then mostly clear at night, with lows in the upper 50s.