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Monsoon storms drench Las Vegas for 2nd day

Updated July 26, 2021 - 8:57 pm

Las Vegas on Monday potentially set a local record for the coolest high temperature ever recorded on the date as a second day of summer storms dumped rain across Southern Nevada.

The National Weather Service said the high Monday was 89 degrees. The previous coolest high of 91 degrees ever recorded for the date was set in 1950, but meteorologist Morgan Stessman said Monday’s potential record could not be confirmed until after midnight.

Crews across southern Nevada worked early Monday to assess damage from Sunday night’s storms as rain continued to pour. The National Weather Service on Monday evening issued a flash flood warning for east Las Vegas and Henderson through 8:15 p.m.

Other flash flood warnings were issued earlier in the day — one for west central Clark County, including Summerlin, that ended at 1:30 p.m., and another for Pahrump that ended at 4 p.m.

Pools of muddy, standing water forced authorities to briefly shut down intersections including Blue Diamond Road and Rainbow Boulevard as well as Fort Apache and Craig roads midday Monday.

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area also saw flash flooding. Park officials reported on Facebook that Monday’s downpour caused waterfalls to briefly stream down the park’s Calico Hills.

In Pahrump, heavy flooding forced officials to close all public offices Monday afternoon, Nye County said in a news release.

The Nye County Sheriff’s Office shared images that showed both major and residential roadways submerged with murky, flowing water as rain continued to fall. State Route 160 was also briefly closed at U.S. 95 late Monday because of flooding.

‘Miserable night’

Sunday’s thunderstorms swept across the Las Vegas region beginning around 8:30 p.m., downing trees and swamping roadways with up to an inch of rain, prompting some swift-water rescues and knocking out power to thousands.

The storms, which generated winds up to 70 mph in some areas, initially stretched from the Centennial Hills area to Hoover Dam before working their way south across the valley.

Pahrump also experienced heavy rains and strong winds late Sunday, ripping roofs off some structures and snapping trees, meteorologist John Adair said. There were no reports of serious injuries or deaths in Southern Nevada.

Resident Sharon McDonald told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that in her 26 years in Pahrump, she had never seen such severe storms. Her 24-year-old pine tree blew over late Sunday and blocked her front door, leaving her locked inside her home, which lost power. Rescue crews helped free her Monday.

“It was scary, because you could hear the trees scraping on the house and the roof,” McDonald said, calling it a “miserable night.”

Water rescues

Late Sunday, 10 drivers were rescued in Henderson from vehicles stalled in standing water, according to Kathleen Richards, a spokeswoman with the city of Henderson.

Clark County Deputy Fire Chief Warren Whitney said county firefighters also conducted two swift water rescues late Sunday, first pulling a woman from a wash off Boulder Highway around 10 p.m.

Crews conducted a second rescue just before midnight, pulling a woman and her children from a car submerged in about four feet of water on the 4200 block of West Alexander Road, Whitney said. Las Vegas police assisted with the rescue.

More than 14,000 customers lost power during Sunday’s storms, according to NV Energy. Most power was restored by early Monday.

Rainfall totals were impressive across the region, according to the weather service. The upper Las Vegas wash area saw just over an inch of rain. Boulder City recorded 0.83 of an inch of rain, while the area surrounding Sam Boyd Stadium saw about 0.70 of an inch.

On Interstate 15 near Primm, a brief downpour near the Nevada-California border amounted to about 0.71 of an inch of rain, according to the weather service.

The Regional Flood Control District recorded its highest area reading of 1.02 inches of rain in Henderson, south of the Galleria at Sunset mall. McCarran International Airport, the weather service’s official recording station, had received about 0.16 of an inch of rainfall Sunday and about 0.07 of an inch as of 8 p.m. Monday.

Monsoonal storm conditions were expected to ease after Monday before returning this weekend, the weather service said.

Contact Alexis Ford at aford@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0335. Follow @alexisdford on Twitter. Contact Jonah Dylan at jdylan@reviewjournal.com. Follow @TheJonahDylan on Twitter. Review-Journal staff writers Glenn Puit, James Schaeffer and Marvin Clemons contributed to this report.

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