A massive storm system that has pounded parts of the South and Midwest this week continued on its path of destruction Tuesday night, dropping upwards of 10 inches of rain on parts of the Florida panhandle and southern Alabama.
Tornadoes from the deadly storms Monday and Tuesday left at least 35 people dead in Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi. In the Florida panhandle, one woman who apparently drove her vehicle into deep water was reported dead in Pensacola, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
The storms overnight brought heavy rainfall, massive flooding and tornado warnings to parts of the region.
By morning, some incredible images were being posted on social media of roads demolished by the high waters and severe weather, flooded homes and stranded vehicles.
Johnson ave pensacola. Holy cow pic.twitter.com/monaBdn0Rm
— Jim Edds (@ExtremeStorms) April 30, 2014
The situation is so bad that officials are calling it the worst flood in that part of the state in 30 years, according to Bill Pearson, a spokesman for Escambia County, which includes Pensacola. The National Weather Service reported between 15 and 20 inches of rain in Pensacola in 24 hours as of Wednesday morning. And as many as 30,000 were left without power in the panhandle.
“It’s gotten to the point where we can’t send EMS and fire-rescue crews out on some 911 calls because they can’t get there,” Pearson told the Associated Press. “We’ve had people whose homes are flooding and they’ve had to climb up to the attic.”
— Nick Hurst (@ALStormChaser) April 30, 2014
— ACREM (@cbemergency) April 30, 2014
In Alabama, “non-stop” precipitation produced nearly a dozen inches of rain by Wednesday morning. First responders resorted to using boats to rescue the stranded. And the National Guard is expected to send high-wheeled vehicles to Pensacola to help with rescue efforts, according to the AP.