Record Rainfall Causes Flash Floods in Kansas and Texas

Manhattan, Kansas, and Lubbock, Texas, both suffered flash floods after record levels of rainfall fell between 04 and 05 May 2015.

Manhattan, Kansas

Flash floods raced through the streets of Manhattan, Kansas, yesterday 04 May 2015, after the heaviest rainfall to hit the city since 1908.

National weather service said that the official observation for Manhattan measured 2.97″ (75.43 mm) at 7 pm, breaking the daily rainfall record of 2.91″ set in 1908.

They also said that by 7:45pm, 3.37 inches (85.59 mm) of rain had been recorded at Manhattan Airport, and 4.15″ (105.4 mm) in areas to the north of the city.

The flash floods made roads impassable, causing major disruptions for drivers. Photos of the floods show water around 2 feet (60 cm) deep in the worst affected areas. Parts of Kansas State University campus were under water, deep enough that some students were able to kayak along campus roads. KSU later closed flooded parts of the campus.

National Weather Service warned today that storms and heavy rain were expected through the early morning hours, and that localized flooding was possible.

Strom warnings for Kansas, May 2015. Image: NOAA
Strom warnings for Kansas, May 2015. Image: NOAA

Social Media Photos of Flash Floods in Manhattan, Kansas

Lubbock, Texas

Meanwhile, around 500 miles south of Manhattan KS, Lubbock and the South Plains area in Texas also saw huge amounts of rainfall on 04 May and early 05 May 2015. Meteorologists say this could be just the first part of a three-day spell of heavy rain set for the area.

Lubbock broke its rainfall record of 0.82 inches for 04 May, previously set in 2001. In fact 1.02 inches (25.9 mm) of rain fell in nearby O’Donnell in just 10 minutes.

NWS said that around half of the average yearly rainfall had fallen in the Lubbock area by 10pm. In a Tweet last night, NWS Lubbock said:

“Heavy rain continues in Lynn county. 7.4″ measured in Tahoka by the official observer. 10-12″ totals between Tahoka and O’Donnell”.

A flash flood watch has been issued by NWS. Several stranded drivers had to be rescued. Lubbock Fire Department had to respond to over 50 call outs during the evening.

The National Weather Service said earlier today that “the next round of thunder storms is moving toward West Texas. More heavy rain possible this morning”.