USA – Flash Floods in South Florida After 650mm of Rain in 24 Hours

Torrential rain of over 25 inches (635 mm) fell in 24 hours in Fort Lauderdale in South Florida, USA, triggering flash floods.

Flooded roads in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, April 2023. Photo: FDOT District 4

Stranded cars littered the streets around Fort Lauderdale, the City of Dania Beach and surrounding parts of Broward County. As of early 13 April, Fort Lauderdale Police reported at least 8 roads in the city were still impassable.

The Mayor of Fort Lauderdale, Dean Trantalis, declared a state of emergency after flooding overnight from 12 to 13 April 2023. He said the amount of rain was unprecedented. Emergency crews received over 900 calls for assistance and worked continuously through the night to carry out rescues.

“I give my heartfelt thanks to the police officers, firefighters, public works employees and other city staffers that worked hard through the storm,” Mayor Dean Trantalis said.

Many of those impacted by the flooding were taken to an emergency centre set up by the Red Cross. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport was forced to suspend its service. Broward County has closed all public schools in response to the severe weather.

The City of Dania Beach also declared a State of Emergency, and officials urged residents to stay off the streets.

National Weather Service (NWS) Miami said Fort Lauderdale recorded 25.91 inches (658.11 mm) of rain in 24 hours to 13 April. Hollywood recorded 18.16 inches (461.26 mm) and Dania Beach 17.30 inches (439.42 mm). The average rainfall in Fort Lauderdale for the whole of April is between 3 to 4 inches (76.2 mm to 101.6 mm).

Rainfall South Florida USA 12 to 13 April 2023. Image: NWS

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