Pensacola, Florida, and Mobile, Alabama, Swamped by Flash Flooding; One Dead ~John Erdman, The Weather Channel
I swear, wake up from covering 2 straight days and nights of incredible Heavy Weather tornadoes and see Pensacola underwater! So of course we checked in with our partners at The Weather Channel and Dr. Jeff Masters, Weather Underground. ~Bruce Biles
Torrential rain from a pair of thunderstorm clusters triggered major flash flooding along parts of the Alabama Gulf Coast and the Florida Panhandle late Tuesday and early Wednesday. Authorities blamed the flooding for one death in Pensacola, Florida.
Several homes and businesses were flooded, the Pensacola News Journal reported. Residents were reportedly stranded in cars and homes, waiting for rescuers to find a way around impassable roads while others abandoned vehicles to walk to safety.
A 10-mile stretch of Interstate 10 was flooded and closed from the Alabama state line into western Florida on Wednesday morning. Several roads were also closed throughout Escambia and Santa Rosa counties.
Fire rescue crews weren’t able to respond to some calls for help because of road flooding in and around Pensacola, Escambia County spokesman Bill Pearson said.
“We’ve had people whose homes are flooding and they’ve had to climb up to the attic,” Pearson told The Weather Channel on Wednesday morning.
Pearson said emergency officials described it was the worst flooding they had seen in 30 years. He cautioned that waters will continue to rise after the rain stops. “If it’s a body of water, it poses a safety threat today,” he said. ~Read more at The Weather Channel.
A flash flood emergency has been declared this morning in Pensacola, Florida and Mobile, Alabama. Record daily rainfall amounts were set on Tuesday in both cities, with 11.13” and 11.24”, respectively. Pensacola Airport recorded a remarkable 5.68 inches of rain in just one hour ending at 10 pm Tuesday night. Flood waters closed a 30-mile stretch of I-10 near the Alabama/Florida border Tuesday night, and a 5-mile stretch remained closed this morning. Numerous high-water rescues have been performed Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, and one drowning has occurred, in a vehicle that tried to cross flooded Highway 29. Two deaths were also reported this morning in Athens, Georgia , where severe thunderstorm winds toppled a tree onto a car. ~Read more from Dr. Jeff Masters, Weather Underground.