Arizona storms bring flooding to wildfire burn scar areas, impacting communities

Posted at 5:14 PM, Jul 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-15 01:45:22-04

Floodwaters from the Telegraph Fire burn scar have receded along Six Shooter Canyon Road near Globe, but the charred remains along the Pinal Mountains will remain a threat to nearby communities in Gila County.

Danny Culpepper, a 12-year resident in the community south of Globe, says the flooding this month has been the worst he's ever seen.

"At my place, we got an inch and a half of rain. They estimated the last storm was 4 inches. That's why there's all of this," he said.

More than 180,000 acres of scorched earth, ash, soot, and debris has nowhere to go after it rains, except downhill toward nearby canyons, creeks, and washes.

“It’s going to continue as the monsoons carry on. The debris flow tends to get less and less as the storms go on, but the water is all dependent on the amount of rain we get,” says Gila County Emergency Manager Carl Melford. He says that areas near Globe are some of the least prepared for flooding.

“These are smaller washes that you see behind us, they’re not prepared for this amount of water, so this is definitely up there with the worst that I’ve seen,” he stated.

Danny Culpepper's home remains unscathed, but the same can't be said for some of his neighbors.

"It was bad. I don’t know if they’ll even recover their house. I don’t know," Culpepper said.

Melford recommends Gila County residents to sign up here for emergency alerts through Everbridge.