Rounds of thunderstorms pounded the Lakes Region of New Hampshire Thursday afternoon into night, causing flash flooding throughout the area, officials said.
According to a flash flood warning from the National Weather Service, local law enforcement in New Hampshire reported road washouts and rising water on area streams and rivers across southern Grafton County at 9:30 p.m. Plymouth, Hanover, Enfield, Groton, Lyme, Hebron, and Waterville Valley were among the communities to experience flooding, according to the warning.
Rain started to fall in the area around mid-afternoon, at about 2:30 p.m. to 3 p.m., said Chris Kimble, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, and it was still falling shortly before 11:30 p.m.
“Basically, a really moist, humid air mass moved into the region that is fueling some very heavy, rain-producing thunderstorms,” said Kimble.
According to radar estimates, as much as 4 inches of rain fell in the region.
“Maybe more in some spots,” Kimble said.
Kimble expected the rain to taper down by Friday morning, but more thunderstorms could be on tap for Friday afternoon.
The state Thursday night had emergency management staff ready to help communities affected by the flooding with “any requests they may have,” according to a statement from the New Hampshire Department of Safety.
Flooding had been reported in a number of communities in southern Grafton County, according to the state.
“Residents should remain alert and heed evacuation requests from local public safety officials,” said New Hampshire’s Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Director Jennifer Harper in a statement.
The state advised residents not to drive through floodwaters on roadways and to report power outages to utility companies.
Rumney Fire Chief Dave Coursey said campgrounds along the Baker River were flooded at about 9:15 p.m. According to Coursey, the river and a brook that runs behind one campground overflowed, causing at least two dozen campers to evacuate. No injuries were reported, he said.
Lakes Region Mutual Fire Aid Lieutenant Kevin Nugent said the flooding was so bad in Groton that there were some residents who were unable to get out of their homes.