Flood Danger Increased by Recent Wildfires

LAS VEGAS -- Potential weekend rain could cause a ripple effect of problems throughout southern Nevada, local officials warned Friday.

The weekend forecast includes the possibility of scattered thunderstorms, which could lead to unforeseen flooding. The recent wildfires in the Mount Charleston area changed the terrain in areas at higher elevation on the valley's edge, which could affect their ability to hold onto rainfall. Normally, vegetation absorbs rainfall, reducing runoff.

The Carpenter 1 fire and activity near the canyons have left parts of the area charred and unable to absorb water.

"This water is not safe to go in - period," Bill Cassell with Metro Police said. "Floodwater is already dangerous, but when you add the ash and soot from the mountains, it becomes exponentially more hazardous. Just a few inches of swiftwater can take a car or SUV in a matter of seconds. If you're driving and spot water on the street, turn around immediately."


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