According to Zaheen Hussain, Millvale sustainability coordinator at New Sun Rising, the floods that hit Millvale today were very similar to last year, and notes there could be a pattern of heavy rains like this becoming more regular. Millvale was ravaged by floods in 2004 and 2007, with 2004 having crested at 21 feet in Millvale. But those heavy floods were caused by hurricanes.
7/11/19 in Millvale. Very similar to scenes from 7/5/18. Was flood free since 2007 before then. pic.twitter.com/Xx89rnkIE9— Zaheen Hussain (@Zaheen129) July 11, 2019
But today's storms were not connected to hurricanes. They're an indication of what could be a new normal for rainfall in the Pittsburgh region. The storms today also pushed Pittsburgh past the pace of precipitation totals compared to last year, which was already the wettest year on record in Pittsburgh’s history.
We are now sitting 0.55 inches above where we were this time last year in terms of precipitation accumulation for the year. We have now received 29.90 inches of precipitation this year compared to 29.35 inches this time last year.— NWS Pittsburgh (@NWSPittsburgh) July 11, 2019
As with large floods, came some crazy sights. Last year, a floating dumpster in the South Hills went viral during the floods. Today, cameras caught a large snake in the flood waters in Sharpsburg.
RT 51 can keep their floating dumpster. We got floating snakes out here in Sharpsburg! pic.twitter.com/OJc8JLzQFF— Andy Kwiatkowski (@jagoffbrewer) July 11, 2019
As a result of the flooding, several roads have been closed as of 5 p.m. O’Hara Township council even declared a state of emergency for the borough. A full list of road closures is listed below:
McKnight Road in the North Hills was also hit very hard. The road is very wide and is surrounded by paved parking lots, giving little place for the water to recede. The flooding was so bad that is caused a sinkhole near the Waldorf Park apartment complex in Ross Township.
The flooding wasn't just isolated to Allegheny County’s northern suburbs. Parts of Pittsburgh have been hit too. Twitter user Todd Derr shows some flooding at his property in Shadyside.
well, fuck - that joy was short-lived. :( at least the couches (and musical equipment) are ok, but I'm gonna be cleaning up for a while. plus it's supposed to rain more this afternoon. pic.twitter.com/nTE02sEwqQ— Todd Derr (@mr_salty) July 11, 2019
Unfortunately, the rain does not appear to be letting up. The Pittsburgh office of the National Weather Service announced that another round of severe storms is heading for the Pittsburgh area, with the strongest storms mostly likely occurring between 4-6 p.m.
Stay safe, Pittsburgh. And as former KDKA meteorologist Jeff Verszeyla suggests: Don't try to drive through the flood waters. It is very dangerous.