Rash of high-water rescues follow flooding rains - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

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Rash of high-water rescues follow flooding rains

Posted: Updated:
U.S. 60 in both directions was shut down between Kyrene and Mill roads in Tempe. (Source: CBS 5 News) U.S. 60 in both directions was shut down between Kyrene and Mill roads in Tempe. (Source: CBS 5 News)
Lightning over Mingus Mountain seen from Prescott. (Source: Catherine Koon, viewer-submission) Lightning over Mingus Mountain seen from Prescott. (Source: Catherine Koon, viewer-submission)
Flooding in the community of Maricopa Sunday morning. (Source: Dixie Hutto, viewer-submission) Flooding in the community of Maricopa Sunday morning. (Source: Dixie Hutto, viewer-submission)
Woman trapped by flood waters rescued at 83rd St. and Desert Cove in Scottsdale. (Source: CBS 5 News) Woman trapped by flood waters rescued at 83rd St. and Desert Cove in Scottsdale. (Source: CBS 5 News)
Motorist trapped at Shea and 64th Street. (Source: Phoenix Fire Department) Motorist trapped at Shea and 64th Street. (Source: Phoenix Fire Department)

Residents in Apache Junction and other far East Valley and Pinal County cities began clean-up efforts after a storm front that moved through Sunday left raging flash-flood waters and deposited mud and debris in many yards and residences.

One to 2 inches of rain per hour fell on mostly saturated ground Sunday. Washes were already flowing at their banks. 

Flooding in Apache Junction was primarily isolated to Weekes and Palm washes, according to Apache Junction Public Works Manager Shane Kiesow.

Widespread flooding also occurred near the vicinity of Tomahawk Road and Superstition Boulevard.

Overflows from Weekes Wash also sent large amounts of water down Palm Wash resulting in moderate street flooding from Idaho Road along 16th Avenue to Meridian Drive.

Private streets and properties within several mobile home parks from a west-southwesterly direction through the city were also impacted along Palm Wash, Kiesow said. 

As of 11 a.m. Monday, all roads within Apache Junction were open except for Lost Dutchman Boulevard between Cortez and Goldfield roads. Lost Dutchmen Boulevard is planned to be open by early to mid-afternoon Monday.

Kiesow said crews noted significant pavement damage to Junction Street and Belaire Road. Those roads will remain open with temporary patching for now. 

Several motorists were rescued in separate operations after the monsoon rolled through central Arizona on Sunday morning.

A woman was carried to safety after her vehicle got stuck in rushing waters near 83rd Street and Desert Cove in Scottsdale at about 12:15 p.m.

Just an hour earlier, Phoenix fire technical rescue units found a woman in her 70s trapped in her car in a wash near 4100 E. Fanfol Dr.

First responders said when they arrived, water in the wash started to subside and Phoenix firefighters reached the woman and carried her to safety.

Phoenix firefighters were also called to assist a trapped motorist at Shea and 64th Street. Rescue crews located a man in his 70s near his vehicle that flood waters had pushed 100 yards down the roadway. Crews launched a shallow water crossing and successfully reached him. 

In Apache Junction, a vehicle carrying two men got caught in floodwaters at Goldfield and Lost Dutchman. The men were able to to scramble up a tree where they awaited a helicopter to airlift them to safety.  

Elsewhere in Apache Junction, there were reports of three people trapped inside a home  surrounded by water at 700 E. Chapparal.

The monsoon dumped about a half inch of rain and prompted he closure of at least two roadways.

Authorities shut down U.S. 60 in both directions between Kyrene and Mill roads in Tempe.

Flooding caused the closure of State Route 238 west of the Pinal County community of Maricopa.

Homes were flooded in the area of Scottsdale Road and Sutton, said Scottsdale Fire Captain David Folio. Firefighters are working with the city of Scottsdale Public Works Department and sandbags may be needed. 

Areas north of Tucson also were seeing rain on Sunday. A flood advisory was issued for an area 15 miles southwest of Kearny.

The 2013 monsoon unleashed rain and high winds Saturday night, leaving an entire Arizona community without power.

All 358 residents in Crown King were thrown into the dark after high winds toppled a power line, according to Arizona Public Service officials.

Hundreds of other residents in Payson and Maryvale also lost power at the height of the storm, APS said.

A low pressure system off the Baja peninsula will continue to draw subtropical moisture into Arizona on Sunday. Be on the lookout for localized flooding.

There is a 50 percent chance of thunderstorms Sunday, dropping to 20 percent Sunday night. As of mid-morning Sunday, pop-up thunderstorms were already roaming parts of the Valley.

"With the additional clouds, higher humidity, and decent rain chances, highs will only top out in the 90s on Sunday," said CBS 5 meteorologist Jason Kadah.

If the high in Phoenix only hits 95 degrees Sunday, it would mark the first time since May 27 that a maximum high temperature this low has occurred.  

In Tucson, crews from Northwest Fire rescued three kids from the Rillito River Saturday evening near La Canada and River Road.

Northwest Fire said crews responded to several calls of three kids caught in a flash flood.

When they arrived, they found them stuck on the sand bar and they were unable to get out.

Responders said the water was quickly rising, but the kids did the right thing by staying together.

The rescue team was able to bring all three back to the bank of the river without injury.

Around the state, some campgrounds at a section of the Apache Sitgreaves National Forest in east-central Arizona are being temporarily closed because of flooding and debris flow.

Forest officials said Friday that the Diamond Rock, Aspen and Deer Creek campgrounds are closed because of the continuation of monsoonal moisture.

The temporary order will be lifted after flood damage stops and a needed repair is done on a Forest Service road.

A few showers or storms are possible on Monday, but then some slightly drier air arrives for the middle and latter portion of the week, which means the best rain chances will be over the higher terrain, Kadah said.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press and KOLD-TV contributed to this report.

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