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Torrential rain causes widespread flooding in Florida panhandle

By: Angela Fritz 2:25 AM GMT on June 10, 2012

Torrential rainfall led to widespread flooding along the northern Gulf Coast on Saturday, and Pensacola came about 2 inches shy of matching its all-time rainfall record for a calendar day: 15.29 inches. On Saturday, Pensacola airport received 13.13 inches of rain. The previous record was set on October 5, 1934, as Tropical Storm 9 of that year was making landfall. The record for any 24 hour period is 17.1 inches, spanning Octover 4-5 in 1934, according to Wunderground weather historian Christopher C. Burt.

A state of emergency was declared for Florida's Escambia County. According to the AP:

Emergency shelters were opened at a few local schools for people who were urged to evacuate from low-lying areas, the newspaper reported. Thousands were without power. Neighboring Santa Rosa County had about 40 homes flooded.

Streets were flooded throughout Mobile, Ala., which got 5.79 inches of rain. County authorities warned residents to stay off the roads until the waters receded and workers could look for damage and downed utilities.

The rain has since ended for now in the Gulf states, but images and video of the aftermath are still pouring in. The area is expected to receive more rain on Sunday, which could last until the middle of next week, as thunderstorms fire along a stationary front which is draped across the coastal states.

Figure 1. Widespread, heavy rain washes onto the Gulf shores on Saturday, enhanced by a lingering stationary front that's draped across the region. The heaviest rain fell in Pensacola, Florida, which came 2 inches shy of breaking its all-time calendar day rainfall record.

Video: Downtown Pensacola still flooded this evening after the rain had stop. The city's airport received 13.13 inches of rain since midnight.

Pensacola, FL
Pensacola, FL
South Fairfield Drive, north of Hwy 98.
Pensacola Flooding
Pensacola Flooding
Out the front window as our house flooded

Flood Extreme Weather

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

952 HouGalv08: Amazing, isn't it, when you see a map like that. We've managed to build the 4th largest city in the country in one of the most flood prone, disaster potential place in the USA.

The topology ain't much worse than NewYork, LosAngeles, or Chicago. The hurricane hit potential is extra, but the land rises fast enough. Even a 30foot(9metre)storm surge wouldn't penetrate that deeply.

Now ya wanna talk poor infrastructure design&engineering and g'dawf'l construction&zoning codes, that's pure politics. If it weren't for insurance companies, ya'd have already been sacrificed to the AlmightyDollar.
1003. dabirds
Quoting ILwthrfan:

You should get a nice soaking this morning.  That complex will miss me 50 miles to the south I believe and should continue gain more and more of a southward bias as it tracks eastward..  It has virtually no northward component to it and it is already due west at its northern extent and points south of me.  
Pretty much been the story for you guys all spring north, south, or dries up to west. At least good weather for your ball teams, saw both the guys and gals were in the final 4, some hardware other than football into the case, congrats to them!