SURPRISE, AZ - Monsoon rains are soaking the Phoenix area after hammering northern Arizona and leaving parts of Flagstaff covered with up to 2 inches of hail.
The summer thunderstorms developed Thursday afternoon across a wide swath of northern Arizona and then moved into metropolitan Phoenix.
Parts of the region are seeing street flooding and some washes were running Friday morning. Rainfall totals range from .20 inches in Surprise to more than half an inch in Chandler. The National Weather Service says some southern desert areas got more than 1 1/2 inches of rain.
Several people had to be rescued from a flooded wash in the west Valley overnight.
Officials said they had to pluck people from eight vehicles near 173rd Avenue and Dixieleta Road.
Surprise fire Capt. Kevin Spirlong said it took about 30 firefighters from six local agencies to get the residents from the wash.
Spirlong said the water was about 2 feet deep and flowing quickly.
He said drivers may have been surprised by the flooding since there was no rain in the area at the time. The flash flooding was a result of rain falling north of there.
Spirlong had a warning for drivers trying to cross flooded roadways.
"The bottom line is, don't cross any flooded washes for any reason you think that you possibly can't make it, do not attempt to go into that water."
Surprise police spokesman Mark Ortega said there has been some damage to roadways and they are being tested for safety.
Manuela Bazi and her mother were stuck in their car and had to be rescued.
Bazi said it was scary after they got stuck and both their cell phones died and they weren't able to contact anyone.
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