Cass County flash flooding strands some ‘on top of their vehicles’

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CASS COUNTY, Mich.  —  The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says it’s been fielding numerous reports of flash flooding around the county. A number of roads have been closed.

A Flash Flood Warning issued by the National Weather Service for Cass and St. Joseph counties expired at 8 p.m. Saturday, and the one for Branch County was set to expire at 8:45 p.m. An Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory posted for those counties expired at 8 p.m. Saturday.

FOX 17 meteorologist Ty Shesky reported that the line of thunderstorms brought heavy rainfall late Saturday afternoon, and were packing pea-sized hail in some locations, with wind gusts in excess of 30 miles per hour.

Several roads were flooded and many culverts failed or were washed out, according to a Cass County Sheriff’s Office news release:

“Several residents in the area of Oil City Road and Davis Lake Street were evacuated from their homes this evening, because their homes were under water. And the current from washouts were moving propane tanks, shed, boats and other large items, causing a hazard to anyone in the immediate area”.

Two separate water rescues were reported. The Sheriff’s Office says some people became stranded “in or on top of their vehicles in large, fast-flowing bodies of water.” In addition, 17 weather-related calls were dispatched to deputies and Fire personnel between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., according to the news release.

“People are urged to stay off the roads until rain events subside, and if you do travel, proceed cautiously and slowly through areas where there (is) water over the road.”

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says it worked with the Cass County Marine Division, Cass County Road Commision, Pokagon Band Tribal Police, the Michigan State Police and numerous fire departments during the weather event.

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