Quick, heavy rainfall causes flooding in several counties

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PITTSBURGH - Residents in several counties are working to clean up Thursday after heavy rainfall caused flooding in Westmoreland, Fayette, Armstrong and Somerset counties.

Severe Weather Team meteorologist Kevin Benson said Wednesday’s storm swept through the area, dumping two to three inches of rain.

The heavy downpours caused flash floods, swamped highways and flooded some businesses, homes and basements.

In Apollo, Armstrong County, one resident said she nearly lost her pet goats and chickens in the fast-moving flood waters.

 “The animals are our first priority. We have to get them pinned up and get things cleaned up in this area and get the driveway back to normal and the basement is a mess,” said Lori George.

George said most of her neighbors do not have flood insurance and most of them suffered damage after a retaining wall of a nearby creek collapsed.

 Still, Diana Baer said it could be worse.

 “We have a lot of water damage and people lost things, but that’s nothing like losing life,” Baer said. 

Channel 11’s Joe Holden visited Sugar Hollow Road in Armstrong County, which seemed to be one of the hardest-hit areas.

“All of the sudden, our backyard was gone and our front yard was gone,” Kiski Township resident Casandra Davidson said. “The road was gone and we thought we were going to be gone, so I grabbed (my daughter) and we fled to higher ground.”

Around 2 p.m. Wednesday parts of Apollo and Kiski were hit hard with rain, which quickly caused flooding.

“I didn’t realize it was coming down hard. I didn’t realize it would be this bad,” Peg Hepler said.

As creeks started to rise, water flowed onto roadways – forcing several closures and detours.

“The rain was coming down. It was nothing more than a sheet and you couldn’t see more than 10 feet in front of you. It was very, very bad,” Eric Andring said.

In Apollo, rising water trapped an SUV on Route 66 at 11th Street, officials said.

With very little warning, people watched the flowing go from a nuisance, to a dangerous situation.

There were also reports of flooding in Butler County, specifically in Bruin.

A section of Route 68 in Chicora, Butler County was closed due to flooding.

“Three weeks ago we had it worse than this. There’s no reason to stress over it,” flood victim Tim Wallace said.

In Westmoreland County, a tree fell and partially blocked Route 30 near Beatty Crossroads.

According to Channel 11’s new exchange partners at The Valley News Dispatch, crews rescued people at the High Meadows Trailer Court in Washington Township.

In Petrolia, Butler County, rain turned a playground into a water park as several inches of water covered the park and basketball court.

If you take any pictures of the flooding or weather damage in your area, please share them on our Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter using the hashtag #WPXIstorm.