Heavy rains cause flooding; residents urged to practice extreme caution

Rain and flood. (file photo)

The National Weather Service (NWS), Guam Weather Forecast Office is reporting that the circulation expected to pass well northeast of Saipan will continue to bring heavy rains across the Marianas through Monday morning.

NWS advised that 2-3 inches of rain have already fallen over parts of central and northern Guam.

The following advisories are in effect:

* An urban and small stream flood advisory is in effect for Guam until 12:45 p.m., meaning river or stream flows are elevated, or ponding of water in urban or low-lying areas is occurring or imminent. Heavy showers and thunderstorms will drop an additional inch or more of rain through 12:45 p.m., resulting in flooding of roads and low-lying areas.

* NWS has upgraded the flood advisory to a flash flood warning, in effect for Guam until 6 p.m. this evening, which means flooding is imminent or occurring. Heavy rain is expected from the developing tropical disturbance. Rainfall of 4 to 8 inches is possible through Monday morning.

Flooding has been reported in the following areas: Tumon, Rt. 1 southbound, near the Micronesia Mall, Hamburger Rd., Harmon, Polaris, northbound lane, Umatac church area, and Merizo, Barcinas area.

K57 sources report that Polaris is almost impassable on the northbound lanes and cars are stalled from Polaris through Agat.

Heavy flooding has impacted the Polaris Pt., Rt. 1 roadway northbound lane, which has been deemed impassable due to stalled vehicles.

Units from the Guam Police Department are there safely assisting motorists to use the southbound lane as a two way street, in the interim.

Out of an abundance of caution, motorists planning to travel through Polaris Pt., Rt. 1 are advised to seek alternate routes until the roadways are cleared.

Although some roadways remain passable for now, out of an abundance of caution, motorists are advised to avoid flooded areas by seeking alternate routes.

Residents and visitors are advised to take the following precautionary actions:

* Turn Around, Don’t Drown. Immediately move to higher ground if flash flooding occurs. Water levels can rise rapidly and sweep people away. Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters. Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and 2 feet of water can sweep your vehicle away

* Stay away from storm drains, culverts, creeks, and streams.
If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. If the water is moving, do not leave the car.
Avoid camping, parking, or hiking along streams, rivers, and creeks while the advisories are in place. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.
Visit https://www.ready.gov/floods to learn more.

GHS/OCD reminds residents and visitors to practice extreme caution while traveling in rainy conditions, driving below the speed limit and allowing enough braking distance between vehicles. Avoid floodwaters and use alternate routes if flooding is encountered.

To report impassable roads, contact GHS/OCD at (671) 475-9600.