Life-threatening flash flooding expected with severe thunderstorm warnings across Arizona
Following Sunday afternoon thunderstorms, the National Weather Service issued flash flood warnings effective through Sunday evening across the state.
Flash flood warnings were in place for Maricopa, Mohave, Gila, Apache, Navajo, Yavapai and Coconino counties.
According to the National Weather Service in Phoenix, "extremely slow" storm motion, high moisture levels and scattered weather activity was expected to bring more heavy rainfall into the state.
Residents across Arizona could expect life-threatening flash flooding on Sunday evening, the weather service said. Thunderstorm conditions were also expected to increase through the late afternoon hours, mainly for the northern parts of the state.
Flash flood warnings were expected to expire at 6:30 p.m. for Mohave, 7 p.m. for Maricopa, 5:45 p.m. for Coconino, 6 p.m. for Yavapai, and 6:15 p.m. for Apache and Navajo counties.
Residents in Apache and Navajo counties were advised to stay away from low water crossings, which are common in mountainous terrains, as they can become extremely dangerous when flooded.
The weather service said areas with particularly dangerous rainfall amounts include the Cave Creek basin, Lake Pleasant and Chinle just north of Highway 264.
The weather service advised people to stay away from all creeks, washes and rivers and to seek alternate routes if they encounter flooded roadways.
"Turn around, don't drown when encountering flooded roads. Most flood deaths occur in vehicles," the weather service said.
The westbound lanes of State Route 238 were closed due to flooding at milepost 38 near Rio Bravo Road, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.
There was no estimated time to reopen the highway and ADOT advised drivers to expect delays.
Other locations where flash flooding is expected include:
- U.S. 160 between mileposts 360 and 370.
- State Route 264 between mileposts 393 and 425.
- U.S. 191 between mileposts 430 and 452.
- U.S. 93 between mileposts 189 and 196.
- Interstate 17 between mile markers 242 and 243.
- State Route 89 between mile markers 258 and 261.
Moisture and storm activity would likely be calmer into the middle of the week, but it was expected to pick up again by next weekend, the weather service said.
Arizona storm causes power outages
Storm activity also caused several power outages on Sunday afternoon.
In the Phoenix area, about 2,300 Salt River Project customers were experiencing weather-related outages since about 4:30 p.m., said Kathleen Mascareñas, an SRP spokesperson.
More than half of those customers were located in Phoenix, between 15th Avenue and 12th Street and between Roeser Road and South Mountain Avenue, Mascareñas said.
More significant outages occurred in Chandler, Gilbert, Peoria and Tolleson. All services were expected to be restored by 9:45 p.m.
Mascareñas advised people to stay informed about outages and to keep a storm safety kit at home.
"We definitely encourage customers to have a safety kit where they keep first-aid items, medication, a flashlight, water," she said. "With monsoon weather, it's important to be prepared."
Nearly 500 Arizona Public Service customers near Prescott and Kirkland were also affected by outages at about 4:30 p.m. due to storm-related conditions, according to the APS outage viewer .
Services were expected to be restored by 10:40 p.m., APS said.
About 70 more outages were reported in Salome at about 5:30 p.m.
"As the storm passes and it becomes safe field personnel will be dispatched to assess the extent of the damage and restore power," APS said.
Power in Salome was expected to return by 8:10 p.m.
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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Life-threatening flash flooding expected with severe thunderstorm warnings across Arizona