Monsoon aftermath: Cleanups continue after 2nd storm in as many days hits Phoenix area

For the second day in a row, parts of the Phoenix area saw monsoon weather on July 14.

According to the National Weather Service, showers and thunderstorms moved into the Phoenix area during the evening hours.

"Gusty winds, [frequent] lightning, and locally heavy rain expected. Isolated strong winds possible. Activity will continue into the early morning hours," a portion of the tweet read.

The National Weather Service also issued a Dust Storm Advisory for parts of western Maricopa County.

Video taken by FOX 10 viewers shows strong wind and rain in the Queen Creek area, as well as the Laveen area in the West Valley.

The storm, according to NWS officials, also helped lower temperatures in the Phoenix area, with parts of the Valley seeing a low of 89F, as of about 9:30 p.m. Despite video evidence of rain in various parts of the Valley, NWS officials say officially, there is no rain yet.

This latest round of monsoon weather resulted in power outages for some people, with SRP officials reporting over 5,600 customers without power in parts of Gilbert and Queen Creek. Power outages were also reported in parts of the West Valley, with over 390 customers affected.

Meanwhile, officials with APS say about 1,063 of their customers were without power, with many of the cases located in an area south of Bell Road and State Route 51 (Piestewa Freeway).

Power was restored to most of those homes by Friday morning.

Cleanups underway

Throughout the day on July 15, people were working to clean up the mess in Gilbert and Mesa, some of which were the results from a storm on July 13.

In one Gilbert neighborhood near Lindsey and Baseline, dozens of trees were ripped from their roots.

"Just heard a really loud bang. The power went out, my husband saw furniture flying by the window. Then, our neighbor called and said your tree just fell down," said Sarah Woodward.

Woodward's pine tree fell down, and the tree hit their friend's truck, which was parked across the street. 

"Completely destroyed our front yard, fell on the truck, so it was pretty devastating," said Woodward.

Down the street, Michael Graham was clearing out branches and fallen trees from his yard.

"One eucalyptus tree fell between house and garage," said Graham. "Didn't do any property damage. Cut it up with chainsaw and put it out to the street."

Stome comes as deja vu for parts of the Valley

On the night of July 13, officials with the National Weather Service issued a number of warnings for the Phoenix area as a result of a storm that brought blowing dust, heavy wind and rain to the Valley. The storm caused flooding along a portion of US 60 in Mesa, resulting in road closures that lasted several hours. That same storm also caused considerable damage in a part of the East Valley.

Elsewhere in Arizona, monsoon weather on July 14 brought heavy rain and hail to parts of northern Arizona, prompting officials to issue Flash Flood Warnings for parts of Coconino County.

You can check the latest weather conditions by visiting the FOX 10 Phoenix weather page, or download the Free FOX 10 Weather app, which is available on Apple iOS and Android.


Be prepared and stay safe during the monsoon

"Most Valley residents know how quickly and furiously storms can move in and out, bringing strong winds, dust, rain, and flash flooding. These storms can cause interruptions in services, such as water, power, and gas," stated Captain Ashley Losch of the Glendale Fire Department.

GFD reminds residents of ways they can be prepared and stay safe:

  • Have flashlights with extra batteries on hand.
  • Have food that can be prepared without the need for cooking or refrigeration.
  • Have at least one gallon of clean water for each person in the household.
  • Have backup power for anyone requiring power for a medical device.
  • Have backup power for cell phones that do not require charging.
  • Have a first aid kit ready and accessible.
  • Never drive into areas with flowing water; it takes less than 10 inches to wash a car away.
  • Avoid flooded areas, such as washes.
  • If waters are rising, seek higher ground.
  • Do not approach downed power lines, the ground can be energized for up to 200 feet.
  • Keep pets indoors during storms.

Rain/flood safety tips

The American Red Cross' tips for heavy rain situations and flood safety:

  • Turn around don’t drown! If you must drive and you encounter a flooded roadway, turn around and go another way.
  • If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground.
  • Tune in to your local radio, NOAA radio, or news channels for the latest updates.
  • If your neighborhood is prone to flooding, be prepared to evacuate quickly.
  • Follow evacuation orders and do not attempt to return until officials say it is safe.
  • If power lines are down, do not step in puddles or standing water.
  • If power is out, use a flashlight. Do not use any open flame as alternate lighting.


Preparing for a severe thunderstorm 

The American Red Cross' tips for preparing for a severe thunderstorm:

  • Put together an emergency kit.
  • Know your community’s evacuation plan.
  • Create a household disaster plan and practice it.
  • Purchase a battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  • Discuss thunderstorm safety with members of your household. Be aware that a thunderstorm could produce flooding.
  • Pick a safe place in your home for household members to gather during a thunderstorm. This should be a place where there are no windows, skylights, or glass doors, which could be broken by strong winds or hail and cause damage or injury.