More strong storms are expected across Eastern Iowa again this afternoon. The area was pounded by heavy rainfall overnight, with some areas taking in over 5 inches of rain.
Flash-flooding, strong winds, hail, and isolated tornadoes are all possible.
Cedar Rapids Police and Fire Departments responded to over 300 calls for service during the flash flooding incident last night, including those for motorists trapped in their vehicle, power lines down, basement flooding, arcing/shorted electrical equipment, and disabled unoccupied vehicles that had floated down the street or into yards.
Several roadways were washed away or severely damaged and are closed with barricades until repairs can be made. No serious injuries were reported.
Included in the road closures are Highway 151 at Fairfax and Highway 1, just north of Mt. Vernon.
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Some flood safety reminders:
- Be aware that flash flooding is very dangerous and can move quickly. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
- Be aware of streams, creeks, and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.
- Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
- Turn around, don’t drown. Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground if you can do so safely. You and the vehicle can be swept away quickly. In fact, two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles including sport utility vehicles and pick-ups.
Stay tuned for further updates this afternoon.