Historic flooding leaves over 1,000 motorists stranded in Detroit
Tuesday, August 12, 2014, 11:07 AM - An historic rainfall event has turned several Detroit highways into rivers leaving hundreds of motorists trapped.
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"More than 1,000 cars were abandoned across the metro area overnight after dozens of high water rescues and evacuations for higher ground," said weather.com Tuesday morning. "Others opted to spend the night in their vehicles, trapped by floodwaters that submerged a countless number of roads across the area."
According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, the pump infrastructure used to keep water off roads was "overwhelmed" from the deluge, causing water to quickly pool in the Detroit metro area.
Police officials announced that they had sent dive teams to search cars for bodies at the bottom of inundated freeways to ensure that no one had been reported as missing, the Associated Press reports.
Michigan State Police was also urging motorists to avoid any unnecessary travel on Tuesday.
"Some of the heaviest rain came in the 6 p.m. hour, when 1.24 inches (31 mm) of rain fell at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in just 24 minutes, part of a record-breaking 4.57 inches (116 mm) of total rainfall for the day," says weather.com. "It is the second-heaviest calendar-day rainfall on record in the Motor City, behind only a 4.74-inch (120 mm) deluge on July 31, 1925.
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While much less significant, localized flooding was also reported in the Windsor area Monday night.
"Rainfall estimates reached up to 20-25 mm an hour, primarily to the south of Windsor," Weather Network meteorologist Tyler Hamilton said early Tuesday morning, with an official total of 74 mm reached.