Friday, July 23, 2010

Sinkhole swallows SUV as storms slam Wisconsin

The latest in a string of heavy precipitation. Warm air holds more moisture. When it meets up with cooler air, that results in heavier rain and snow falls. We can't say that a particular episode of extreme weather is due to global warming, but we can say that some portion of it is.

MILWAUKEE — Torrential rains that flooded roads and runways kept Milwaukee's main airport shut at least through midday on Friday, while the city braced for another batch of storms.

Cars were submerged, streets and highways were flooded, and a sinkhole swallowed a sport-utility vehicle and a traffic light.

The closure of General Mitchell International Airport was due "to flooding on the airfield and roadways leading to the airport," the airport's website said.

The airport, which handled nearly 8 million passengers last year, shut on Thursday night as a parade of storms dumped 5-1/2 inches of rain on the city on Thursday. A rain gauge in the suburb of Shorewood recorded nearly a foot of water.

A flash flood watch remained in effect through Saturday morning, the National Weather Service said in an advisory, warning of possible widespread flooding.

Also under flood watch were parts of northern Illinois and western Iowa.

"Additional heavy rainfall will exacerbate the already-bad situation as many areas of high water remain from flooding on Thursday," the Weather Service said.

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