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U.S. 24 reopens, flash flood warnings in Pikes Peak region expire

By: The Gazette
May 23, 2014 Updated: May 24, 2014 at 12:47 am
Caption +
Water flows under cars parked along Pawnee Avenue during a storm that dropped more than an inch of rain on Manitou Springs Friday, May 23, 2014. Michael Ciaglo, The Gazette

UPDATE: 11:25 p.m.

U.S. 24 has reopened. The Colorado Department of Transportation warns motorists to watch for rock on the roadway.

It had been closed since 8:27 p.m. Friday.


UPDATE 11:15 p.m.

The flash flood warning expired in the Pikes Peak region and area residents breathed a sigh of relief. No serious flooding was reported, although there was localized street flooding in Manitou Springs and Colorado Springs.

U.S. 24 has not reopened, but plenty of cars are waiting in the westbound lanes. According to emergency radio traffic, the road is being checked for mud and debris.

The series of storms that began about 7:30 p.m. brought lightning, hail and heavy rain to the region, but the Waldo Canyon burn scar was not hard hit.

The weather service said the threat of flooding has passed for the night. But similar weather could hit on Saturday, with a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon.

Colorado Springs Utilities reports a weather-related power outage in the Security/Wildfield area, affecting about 1,700 customers. Estimated time for restoring power is one to two hours.


UPDATE 10 p.m.

National Weather Service rain gauge measurements:

- .67 inches at lower Waldo Canyon between 8:20 and 9:20 p.m.

- 1.8 inches in Manitou in two hours

U.S. 24 remains closed and flash flood warning in effect until 11:15 p.m. Radar shows severe storms west of Colorado Springs, moving north. National Weather Service says heavy rain could continue a couple more hours.

Red Cross evacuation center open at Congregational Church, 103 Pawnee Ave., in Manitou Springs.


UPDATE 9:35 p.m.

Colorado State Patrol reports the westbound closures of U.S. 24 has been moved east to Manitou Avenue.

Woodland Park High School graduation ceremonies began at 7 p.m. at the Pikes Peak Center in Colorado Springs. Attendees may have to wait awhile before heading home to Teller County because of the closure.

Reporter Jakob Rodgers says rain is picking up again in Manitou, accompanied by small hail. Follow him on twitter @JakobRodgers


UPDATE 9:25 p.m.

A  band of storms stretching south of Pueblo West is moving north. Heavy rain is predicted to impact Fort Carson, up through the southern half of Colorado Springs as well as the Waldo Canyon burn scar, said National Weather Service meteorologist Kyle Mozley.

Rain gauges near the burn scar have measured rainfall of up to an inch per hour and several more hours of rain is expected, he said.

Emergency personnel warn people to remain cautious as it takes time for water to drain off the burn scar.

Heavy rain reported on west side of Colorado Springs, and thunderstorm continues over downtown.

UPDATE 9 p.m.:

The Pikes Peak chapter of the American Red Cross is opening an evacuation center at the Congregational Church at 103 Pawnee Ave., in Manitou.

Fountain Creek is running high with lots of muddy water and street flooding continues in Manitou, including on Canon Avenue, where flood waters in summer 2013 wiped out houses and caused extensive damage.

Colorado Springs have special units monitoring streets for flooding as storm cells move through the area.

Strong storms also over Fremont County now.


UPDATE 8:50 P.M.

Manitou and Colorado avenue are flooding in some spots, and residents in low-lying areas are being told to seek higher ground.

There also are flash flood warnings in Weld and Larimer counties in northern Colorado.

Reporter Jakob Rodgers says cars are streaming out of the area around the Blue Skies Inn in Manitou, where there was significant flooding last year.



U.S. 24 is closed in both directions west of Manitou Springs because of a flash flood warning, and some streets in Manitou are being shut down.

Heavy rain is falling on the Waldo Canyon burn scar, and rain and hail are hitting Manitou.

The National Weather Service in Pueblo has issued a flash flood warning for western El Paso, Teller, Pueblo, Custer, eastern Fremont counties until 11:15 p.m.

Heavy rain up to an inch has already fallen over some areas and flash flooding is possible in the areas of the Waldo Canyon and Black Forest burn scars.

A line of storms is moving from Canon City to the northeast and across Colorado Springs.

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