Grand Canyon Flooding Sparks Evacuations and Disruptions

Grand Canyon Flooding Sparks Evacuations and Disruptions

Flooding at the Grand Canyon’s south rim has triggered evacuations, power outages, and swift water team responses, according to reports from the Arizona Department of Transportation. The situation has led to road closures and warnings from park officials.

The National Park advised against travel to and from the South Rim due to the flooding, leading to the closure of State Route 64 just south of Tusayan, a gateway town serving as one of the park’s two entrances. The National Park’s message was conveyed through X, the social platform previously known as Twitter.

As of Wednesday morning, there have been no reported fatalities, and road closures are being gradually lifted. Rainfall began on Monday and persisted until late Tuesday night.

The flooding resulted from a significant amount of rain, with 2 to 3 inches falling over a short period on Tuesday afternoon. This accumulation caused water to pool nearly 3 feet high in Tusayan, the gateway town located in Coconino County.

A flood advisory issued by the National Weather Service extended into Wednesday morning, cautioning about the potential risks associated with continued flooding.

Residents were urged to stay put, with Coconino County officials advising people to shelter in place until the waters receded. Over 100 individuals were evacuated from hotels and employee housing, and approximately 70 students from a local school district were relocated from school property to their homes.

Although the road closures caused disruptions, State Route 64 eventually reopened inside the park and in Tusayan. However, the aftermath of the flooding has led to power outages in Tusayan, as crews work to clear damaged areas.

The Arizona Department of Transportation urged drivers to exercise caution, especially when driving near high water and in rainy conditions. They recommended slowing down, using headlights, and avoiding areas where water is visible on the road.

Grand Canyon Flooding Sparks Evacuations and Disruptions

While the immediate impact of the flooding is being managed, the incident underscores the vulnerability of even iconic natural landmarks to the increasing frequency of extreme weather events.

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