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Heavy rains bring flooding and cancellations around Tampa Bay

Teri Bowden of St. Petersburg leaves the Target store at St. Petersburg’s Gateway Mall in the rain with her five children, from left, Chloe, 8: Jonah, 6; Jayda, 9; Layla (in the cart), 8 months; and Sydney, 2. “I was out of diapers,” Bowden explained. 

CHERIE DIEZ | Times

Teri Bowden of St. Petersburg leaves the Target store at St. Petersburg’s Gateway Mall in the rain with her five children, from left, Chloe, 8: Jonah, 6; Jayda, 9; Layla (in the cart), 8 months; and Sydney, 2. “I was out of diapers,” Bowden explained. 

The heavy rains that fell around the Tampa Bay area caused flooding Friday, and lighter showers may continue today.

Pinellas County got 3 to 5 inches falling by late Friday afternoon, said Bay News 9 meteorologist Diane Kacmarik. In Hillsborough, Tampa International Airport likely broke a record 3.8 inches of rain, Kacmarik said. MacDill logged more than 6 inches at 5 p.m.

Some afternoon storms could form today, especially along the coast, Kacmarik said, but the worst is likely over.

"I don't think the rain will last as long or get as high as it did Friday," she said.

The downpour canceled events or closed them early, and brought troublesome flooding to low-lying areas.

In Largo, it caused waist-deep flooding that prompted the evacuation of the Mariner's Cove Mobile Home Park at 5796 Ulmerton Road, fire officials said.

Largo Fire Rescue Division Chief Mark Michaels said 54 people were evacuated from the park near U.S. 19 at about 4 p.m. Firefighters used rafts to ferry residents to safety, and Progress Energy shut down power there as a precaution, Michaels said. The American Red Cross assisted some residents with temporary shelter, Michaels said. The scene was reminiscent of 2006, when heavy rains caused damage to many of the mobile homes in the park.

In Tampa, there were reports of isolated flooding around the region, including parts of Bayshore Boulevard and 50th Street in Tampa Broadway Avenue to Adamo Drive.

If you were planning to go anywhere today, your best bet is to call first.

Heavy rains bring flooding and cancellations around Tampa Bay 07/08/11 [Last modified: Friday, July 8, 2011 10:35pm]
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