Dramatic Footage Shows Cars Washed Away During Flash Flooding in Flagstaff, Arizona

Footage posted on social media showed cars being washed away during flash flooding in Arizona, as areas of the state were hit with heavy rain for the second day in a row.

One video, shared on Twitter by local meteorologist Ian Schwartz, showed a silver Toyota Prius getting carried down a residential street in Flagstaff, Arizona, by intense floodwaters on Wednesday morning.

The footage was shared with Schwartz by Flagstaff resident Taylor Landy, who told the Arizona Republic that she shot the clip from inside her garage, which was spared from the floodwaters during the heavy rain.

"I definitely was worried for our neighbors across the street because the water was actually reaching their level of the garage, but it wasn't reaching our side of the street," she said.

Landy can be heard screaming: "Oh my God!" during the footage as the car gets carried down the road by the water, before once again exclaiming: "Oh my God!" as the vehicle hit a parked truck before the muddy floodwaters took the Prius out of sight down the street.

She told CBS affiliate 3TV that she works nights at a local hospital and was woken up on Wednesday morning when thunder and heavy rain hit her area.

Whoa!!! Major flash flooding this afternoon in Upper Greenlawn area in Flagstaff. Video from Taylor Rae. #azfamily #azwx pic.twitter.com/mUlbOUv6f4

— Ian Schwartz 🏀 Go Suns! (@SchwartzTV) July 14, 2021

Landy also said that she witnessed mailboxes getting destroyed and trash cans being taken by the floodwaters before she saw the car getting swept past her house.

She explained that: "I never thought our street would have rushing water that would carry a car. in a better choice of words, it was gnarly."

It was the second time in as many days that the Coconino County area in Arizona was hit by flooding, with parts of east Flagstaff receiving around 2.5 inches of rain on Wednesday, as the county issued a "shelter in place" order.

The National Weather Service in Flagstaff also issued a flash flood warning for around 83,800 residents in the county, but the flooding in Flagstaff only lasted for about 30 minutes on Wednesday morning, according to the Republic.

A fire at a museum just north of Flagstaff in 2019 may have been partly responsible for the flash flooding, the Republic said. Areas that have experienced wildfires can struggle to absorb water in the same way as healthy soil.

The National Weather Service explains that "a general rule of thumb is that half an inch of rainfall in less than an hour is sufficient to cause Flash Flooding in a burn area," as "the susceptibility to flash flood within the burned area is greatest during the first two years following the fire."

Other footage shared by local residents on social media on Wednesday showed heavy flooding in the areas hit by the wildfire in 2019, as roads quickly became flooded.

Your @GRFDAZ firefighters had a busy morning! Along with the lightning strike to the house, they safely rescued a man and his two daughters from the roof of their vehicle after it was swept away in fast moving water. So thankful that no one was hurt and everyone went home safe! pic.twitter.com/A9vwm5CzXC

— Golder Ranch Fire (@GRFDAZ) July 14, 2021

The Golder Ranch Fire service in Arizona, based about 4 hours away from Flagstaff, also shared footage on Twitter on Wednesday showing its firefighters rescuing a man and his two daughters from a car after their vehicle was swept away by flooding during heaving rain in the state.

The NWS issued flood advisory warnings for Flagstaff on Thursday, as the agency expects the area to be hit by heavy rainfall and thunderstorms.

Landy said that she wasn't scared by Wednesday's flood, but she's concerned about how the area will cope with the heavy rainfall that's scheduled for the rest of the week in parts of Arizona.

"(The water) came on so fast we could have probably thought to walk in the water for a second and then the next thing you know, it could have swept up all the way," she explained to 3TV.

Landy added to the Republic: "I think we're also weary that this is only the second day and we have rain coming the whole rest of the week, so that kind of anticipation is what is making us a little bit more nervous."

Arziona hit with flash flooding
File photo of a road closure as water covers the street. Footage posted on social media on Wednesday shows a car being washed away during flash flooding in Arizona, as areas of the state were hit with heavy rain for the second day in a row. djperry/iStock / Getty Images Plus