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Flash flooding hits metro Denver after heavy storm, tornado scare


Martin Luther King Boulevard was flooding in the Park Hill area on June 25, 2015.

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DENVER -- The National Weather Service issued tornado and flash flood warnings for Denver and several surrounding counties Wednesday afternoon. Some of those warnings had expired by Wednesday evening, but flooding was expected to remain a concern for a most of Metro Denver late into the night.

FOX31 Denver Weather Tracker Daryl Orr snapped a photo shortly before 5 p.m. of what appeared to be a funnel cloud near the intersection of E-470 and 6 Avenue, which is in East Denver.

FOX31 Denver's Tak Landrock was also reporting that Aurora Police officers spotted funnel clouds in that same area, near Montview Boulevard and Yosemite Street.

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Sirens were sounding near the Aurora Reservoir Wednesday afternoon, where a severe thunderstorm was dropping golf ball-sized hail as well as hail up to two inches in diameter with some spin accompanying the storm, according to FOX31 Denver meteorologist Chris Tomer.

Thankfully, shortly after 5:30 p.m., FOX31 Denver meteorologist Dave Fraser said the tornado threats in the area had dissipated.

However, due to the heavy rain and hail falling around the Metro Denver area Wednesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for Denver, Arapahoe and Adams counties until 10:15 p.m.

Flooding concerns were apparent in many parts of Denver.

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It was clear to see Cherry Creek running much higher than normal through downtown, causing several areas of flooding -- including one just outside the FOX31 Denver studios near Speer Boulevard and 6th Avenue.

There were reports received by Denver Fire around 5:30 p.m. that a person had been swept away in the flooding waters of the Cherry Creek near Champa Street and Speer Boulevard.

Emergency crews set up at Confluence Park, where the creek dumps into the South Platte River, hoping to catch that person down stream. However, crews packed up in that area after finding nothing shortly after 7 p.m.

Cheery Creek Shopping Center also reporting flooding on the top floor of the mall, with several moviegoers saying they had been evacuated from the AMC 8 theater inside.

Just south of Cheesman Park, a tree that was downed by the heavy winds and hail was blocking two lanes of 6th Avenue between Humboldt and Franklin streets in the middle of rush hour.

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There were also reports and photos of significant flooding in the Park Hill area, especially along Martin Luther King Boulevard, where several cars were seen completely halfway submerged in water.

Cities in other parts of the state were also experiencing severe weather Wednesday afternoon and evening, including Pueblo County in Southern Colorado and Lincoln and Elbert counties in Eastern Colorado. All three areas were under Flash Flood Warnings at some point Wednesday evening.

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