WHEATLAND, Wyo. (AP) A flash flood Tuesday covered Wheatland and surrounding areas with up to four feet of water in parts, an emergency management coordinator said.
In slightly more than two hours starting at about 3:45 p.m., torrential rains flooded creeks and streets, mostly in town and west and south of town, said Platte County Emergency Management Coordinator Jane Carlson.
The floods started to recede by late evening. Areas west of Wheatland were left with the deepest water, at 4 feet in spots after 5 to 7 inches of rainfall, officials said.
Ive lived here 40 years, and Ive never seen it this bad, said County Fire Warden Gale Kittell. This is the highest water Ive seen.
An emergency shelter was set up as authorities evacuated a trailer park, Carlson said. The shelter closed late Tuesday evening as residents returned home.
Outside of town, a family was trapped briefly when heavy currents pushed their car off Reservoir Road into a field, she said.
A farmer rescued the family and their car with a tractor by the time a rescue team arrived, she said.
No injuries have been reported, she said.
Some roads in and around town closed because of flooding. By evening, motorists were advised that they could try to go home but to reverse course if the streets were too flooded, she said.
Some homes and businesses were reportedly surrounded by water, but other residents said the flooding receded before it damaged property. Downed fences and other debris littered farmers fields after the storm, which included high winds and pockets of hail.
Melody Matheson, who lives about a mile southwest of town, said friends and neighbors helped prevent her basement from flooding with anything they could grab: Sand bags, wood stove pellets and railroad ties floating in the water.
When it was raining my biggest concern was that some our windows were leaking water when they were shut, she said. I was just trying to keep the water from ruining the walls. I got lots of towels.
A flash flood watch remained in effect until 1 a.m. Wednesday for much of southeastern Wyoming and the western two-thirds of the Nebraska panhandle, according to the National Weather Service.