NEWS LIVE: This report contains news live as it develops and is being updated continuously. Bookmark and refresh the page periodically for updates. LAST UPDATE: 2:35 p.m.
ST. GEORGE – Due to damage from heavy rains associated with Tropical Storm Norbert near Baja, California, Monday, interstate travel on I-15 is impeded between Las Vegas and St. George.
The prolonged period of moderate to heavy rainfall and embedded thunderstorms produced widespread rain amounts of 1-3 inches and up to 5 inches of rain in some areas in Nevada.
Officials told ABC 13 they expect I-15 to be shut down for three-to-four days.
Updated at: 2:35 p.m.: Post storm clean up begins in St. George
With the passing of the storm, a cleanup process has begun in St. George and the surrounding area.
Marc Mortensen, assistant to the city manager of St. George, said the city has entered “cleanup mode.”
At first, it didn’t look like the storm would hit the St. George area, but Mother Nature had other ideas.
“We thought we had dodged the bullet,” Mortensen said, but that changed when the downpour came at about 10:30 a.m.
An estimated 1 ½ to 2 inches of rain hit St. George between 10:30-11:30 a.m., Mortensen said. That’s about the same amount of rainfall that hit the city on Aug. 26. The area’s annual rainfall is around 8 ½ inches, he said.
Unlike the August storm, only five roadways had to be shut down due to Tuesday’s flooding, he said.
Roadways affected by the storm included Sunset Boulevard at 2100 West, north 200 East to Skyline Drive, 1060 North to 1400 West, 540 N. Dixie Downs Road, and 1130 N. 1340 West.
A number of apartments were flooded in the area around Westridge Drive. On 200 East, small boulders fell into the roadway from the Red Hill. However, Mortensen said there has been no critical damage to public infrastructure.
As the waters continue to drain away, the cleanup process commences and continues.
“We’re back to where we were two weeks ago,” Mortensen said, referring to the debris left behind by the flooding. It may take a few weeks to clean up after this latest storm, he said.
“We’re asking for people to be patient with the (cleanup) process,” Mortensen said.
Update at 12 p.m.: Nevada Department of Transportation is working on opening up I-15 at Nevada Exit 93 junction with state Route 169 to Logandale and Overton, according to a text message from Arizona Highway Patrol Sgt. John T. Bottoms. This would allow rerouting traffic through the Valley of Fire to reach Las Vegas. The detour will be available to passenger traffic only, Bottoms said, and no commercial traffic will be permitted to travel south of Mesquite, Nevada. Bottoms said very long delays are expected as all of the traffic stopped in Nevada will proceed on that route. Watch for further update confirming the Valley of Fire alternate route is open before proceeding.
The Washington County School District has canceled afternoon pre-school and kindergarten classes have been canceled by the for Santa Clara, Coral Cliffs, Arrowhead, Red Mountain, Sunset, Dixie Sun elementary schools.
Water in some flooded areas in St. George is beginning to go down, though it is leaving behind mud and debris.
UDOT reports that SR-9 Through Zion National Park is closed.
Update at 11:25 a.m: Main Street in Washington City where it passes under I-15 is closed.
Indians Hills Drive and Dixie Drive area should be avoided.
Report continues below
Waterfall off the Red Hill, St. George, Utah, Sept. 9, 2014 | Video by Brett Barrett
Update at 11 a.m.: The City of St. George is reporting road closures at 1000 East and Red Hills Parkway and North 200 East to Skyline Drive
A portion of Sunset Boulevard also appears to be shutdown due to flooding across the road near the Sand Hollow Aquatic Center.
Heavy flooding off Westridge Drive is being reported with flooding to apartments in the area.
The Washington County School District has dismissed Snow Canyon Middle will be dismissed due to flooding within school at noon. Buses will transport students.
St. George Police posted on its Facebook page that people can get sandbags, at the St. George Reuse Center at 575 E Brigham Road. You can also contact them by phone at 435-627-4028.
Zion National Park
The Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway is closed through the park due to water & debris on the road. Shuttle service to Zion Canyon has been suspended.
The National Weather Service has issued a Flash Flood Warning for Zion National Park until 8:15 p.m. All slot canyons, including The Narrows, are closed.
Update at 10 a.m.: I-15 southbound at Exit 2 in Utah has been reopen. Traffic will be permitted to travel through the Gorge to Mesquite but travel any farther south is prohibited.
Read more here: News LIVE: Heavy rains shut down Virgin River Gorge
There will be no school Tuesday in Mesquite, Bunkerville and Moapa, Nevada.
- I-15 North and southbound remains closed at Moapa, Nevada.
- I-15 northbound from Mesquite to St George is open.
- I-15 southbound from St George to Mesquite has reopened as of 9:50 a.m.
If you must travel to and from Las Vegas the roads through Lincoln County, Nevada, are open, specifically Nevada Hwy 93, Hwy 319, Utah Hwy 56, Utah Hwy 18, I-15 in Utah.
From St. George to Las Vegas: take Highway 18 to Utah Highway 56 which becomes Nevada Highway 319 to U.S. Highway 93, to I-15 in Nevada.
Mesquite Police urge everyone to please drive careful and be mindful of emergency crews.
Flash flood warnings remain in effect
The National Weather Service flood warning remains in effect until 9 a.m. PDT for the muddy river in northeastern Clark County.
According to the National Weather Service, law enforcement officials reported that water had receded as much as 5 feet in flooded sections of Overton between 12:30 a.m. and 1:30 a.m. However, a secondary flood wave on the muddy river was indicated by a gage near Moapa. This will likely produce an additional rise along the muddy river in Overton before sunrise. Though it will be less substantial than the initial flood. People along the muddy river from Moapa to Overton are urged to remain vigilant for flooding through the night.
Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.
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- Storm swells Virgin River, flash flood at Fort Pierce Bridge; STGnews Aerial Videocast
- News LIVE: Storm hits Washington, homes flooded; STGnews Photo Gallery
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