PENSACOLA, Fla. — Record amounts of rain dropped on the central Gulf coast Saturday, causing what could be millions of dollars in flood damage in the Pensacola area alone with more rain on the way.
The National Weather Service said 13.11 inches fell on Pensacola over 24 hours by Saturday, coming close to the city's all-time record of 15.29 inches set in 1934.
The rain hit a lull by Saturday night, but NWS meteorologist Jason Beaman said they expected more showers and thunderstorms overnight and more intense rain again on Sunday and into Monday.
The Florida Panhandle's Escambia County declared a state of emergency. Sheriff David Morgan told the Pensacola News Journal that he estimated the damage around the county at around $20 million. The sheriff's department's central booking building was among the buildings flooded.
Emergency shelters were opened at a few local schools for people who were urged to evacuate from low-lying areas, the newspaper reported. Thousands were without power. Neighboring Santa Rosa County had about 40 homes flooded.
Streets were flooded throughout Mobile, Ala., which got 5.79 inches of rain. County authorities warned residents to stay off the roads until the waters receded and workers could look for damage and downed utilities.