Monsoon brings heavy rain, high winds, power outages, damage to Valley homes

Posted at 7:09 PM, Jul 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-19 07:35:35-04

The monsoon returned Monday, bringing heavy rain and high winds to the Valley.

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport officials say the severe weather caused some delays Monday evening, and wind gusts were reported at up to 50 mph in some areas.

Residents were dealing with flooded streets and some downed trees along with scattered power outages, but Arizona Public Service and Salt River Project officials say electricity should be restored soon.

Check APS power outages here

Check SRP power outages here

Near 30th Street and Baseline Road, Deandra Ervin and Mark Astrauskas' cinder block wall blew over during the heavy winds.

"The wind we got, I honestly thought it was a hurricane," Ervin said.

A neighbor's cinder block wall also toppled during the storm. Homeowners with flashlights surveyed the damage Monday night. A warped street sign ended up a block from its pole.

Flooding rains slowed traffic along Baseline Monday afternoon, and snapped trees onto the roadway in the area of 30th Street.

"I was shocked," Astrauskas said. "[I] looked out the window and saw the rain going sideways."

Another Phoenix family is leaning on each other for supposed after the water took over their home. 

"It just hammers down. And comes off the mountain," said Ronny Schwartz, whose home was damaged.

Cellphone video shows water and mud rushing in and around their home.

The water was strong enough to knock down their back wall, and all they had were rocks to try to stop the water from coming in.

"It was coming over the wash and filling the pool. I was just trying to keep in from coming into the house,” Schwartz said.

The family says they were still in the process of fixing the house from when they were hit during the 2014 floods.

"We aren't even done remodeling," Schwartz said.

Now, they are praying that the city would hurry up and build the flood walls that they promised.

"The City of Phoenix isn't acting more quickly to build the flood wall. I don’t' think this it is supposed to be done until next year. How many times does this have to happen before they do something about it?" Schwartz said.

The family has set up a GoFundMe to help pay for this round of repairs. They said the house belongs to their father, who died of cancer. They just got the deed to the home last week and didn't have time to get flood insurance.

Phoenix Fire Department officials say crews brought under control a wind-driven second-alarm fire south of the downtown area.

Arizona's traditional monsoon season runs from mid-June to the end of September and is characterized by thunderstorms that stir up dust storms or rain.