Some communities in Massachusetts saw several inches of water in streets as Tropical Storm Elsa brought heavy rain to New England Friday, and the National Weather Service warned of flooding at several area rivers.
At about 1 p.m., the National Weather Service estimated about 3.5 inches of rain had fallen in southern New England, leading to “minor flooding associated with quick river rises and pockets of urban flash flooding.”
In Worcester, about 5 to 6 inches of water flooded Route 146 as Elsa moved through, and cars were seen by a Boston 25 news crew struggling to pass through the roadway.
The weather service’s Northeast River Forecast Center anticipated that multiple rivers in the state would experience minor flooding due to the storm.
The center listed the Hoosic River in Williamstown, the Neponset River in Norwood, the Sudbury River in Saxonville, and the Shawsheen River in Wilmington and Andover as potential flood sites.
By noon Friday, the Hoosic River had already flooded while the Neponset and Sudbury rivers were nearing flood stage, according to the center.
The weather service issued flash flood warnings through Friday afternoon for parts of Central, Eastern, and Western Massachusetts and parts of Rhode Island. The rest of the state was under a flood watch.
Forecasters said the greatest risk for flooding was in the Boston to Providence corridor, where the heaviest rain was expected.
“Hilly terrain can make low lying poor drainage areas particularly dangerous in heavy rain,” the weather service warned.
Kristie Smith of the National Weather Service Boston observed about 8 inches of flooding in Norwood, and the weather service said it anticipated conditions to worsen.
A chat room hosted by the weather service showed reports of floods in Worcester, Framingham, Methuen, Peabody, and Newton, with some prompting street closures in the areas.
Framingham Police said in a tweet Friday afternoon that Worcester Road near Route 126 is closed to traffic due to flooding.
BE ADVISED: Worcester Road/Rt. 9 near Rt.126 is flooded and closed to through traffic.— Framingham Police (@FraminghamPD) July 9, 2021
The ramps on Concord Street (Rt.126) connecting to Rt. 9 are also closed.
Traffic will be diverted on Rt. 9 West at Concord Street and Rt. 9 East at Aberdeen Road.
Seek an alternate route. pic.twitter.com/tCkvsyqJdz
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation said on Twitter that a stretch of Route 107 in Lynn was closed in both directions because of flooding.
Shortly before 6 a.m., forecasters warned of rising waters in the Pawtuxet River in Cranston, cresting up to 11 feet by Friday afternoon, a “moderate” flood stage level. The National Weather Service said streets and homes in the areas surrounding the river could be affected.
The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency is warning drivers not to go into flooded roadways as cars can be swept away, noting that during a flood, the speed of the water flowing can quickly change.
With heavy rain occurring today & flash flood warnings already issued for some areas, a reminder:— MEMA (@MassEMA) July 9, 2021
Turn around, don't drown!
• Never drive into a flooded roadway. Cars can be swept away in 2 ft. of moving water.
• Do not drive around road barriers.https://t.co/LhLxK1vjw7#Elsa pic.twitter.com/OpOPRGlFlR
While interior parts of the state contended with flooding, forecasters anticipated winds to whip up particularly in parts of the south coast, Cape Cod, and the islands as Elsa moved up the Atlantic coast. The Cape and Islands could see gusts up to 40 to 60 miles per hour, according to the weather service.
Some communities in Connecticut endured significant flooding, including Milford, Stratford, and New Haven, according to social media reports.
One person even saw a neighbor canoeing in the flood waters near their backyard in Milton, according to video posted by an NBC reporter.
VIEWER VIDEO: Could you imagine looking out and seeing a neighbor CANOEING on the other side of YOUR BACKYARD?! Well that was the sight for one Milford resident this morning @NBCConnecticut @ryanhanrahan @bobmaxon @WeatherJosh @KaitlynMcGrath @DarrenSweeney pic.twitter.com/Ez24CbGZXx— Michael Fuller (@MichaelFullertv) July 9, 2021
Globe correspondent Andrew Brinker and Brittany Bowker of the Globe Staff contributed to this report.