Rain moves out of North Texas after a good daylong soaking

Posted Friday, Sep. 20, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Four people were rescued Friday morning from a swollen creek in south Arlington and one student was taken to a hospital after a Mansfield school bus crash on slick streets, authorities said.

The rescue and wreck came after a night and morning of much needed rain, which made for a messy Friday morning commute — but also cooled things off a bit. The day’s high temperature was 76 after weeks of rainless days in the 90s and higher.

The break was brief. Today, the first day of autumn, the sun will be back out and high temperatures in the mid-80s are forecast.

Arlington firefighters were first called about 7:30 a.m. to rescue a woman and her 16-year-old daughter whose car had been swept off the road and into Bowman Branch creek, which runs past Webb Ferrell Road and Hanrahan Avenue in south Arlington.

The pair were hanging onto trees, and firefighters waded in to help them to safety, said Lt. Kevin Seeton, an Arlington Fire Department spokesman.

Firefighters also helped another mother and her 14-year-old daughter who were perched on top of their flooded car on Webb Ferrell, Seeton said. The team extended a ladder from a truck to help the women get to dry ground.

“We think that it was dark and the women started across the road and could not tell how deep the water was,” Seeton said. “Their cars just got washed away.”

The school bus crash happened at the corner of Grand Peninsula Drive and Navigation Drive in Grand Prairie, near Daulton Elementary School, which is in the Mansfield district.

The bus was headed for Lake Ridge High School with 10 students when it collided with a vehicle, said Mansfield school district spokesman Richie Escovedo.

Escovedo said the student, who was taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure, was doing fine.

Fort Worth firefighters responded to about 60 wrecks, said Tim Hardeman, Fort Worth Fire Department spokesman, at 10 p.m. Friday. There were 24 wrecks on Thursday, and 11 to 15 is more common, he said.

“Our message to motorists is to drive safely, slow down, and get off the phones and drive,” Hardeman said. “Do not drive through water on the roadway.”

The official rainfall total at DFW Airport was 2.03 inches from about 9 p.m. Thursday when rain began through 9 p.m. Friday, according to the National Weather Service.

The area is now at 20.96 inches for the year, 4.93 inches below normal of 25.89. The recent rains will not bring the region out of the drought.

“We’re going to put a dent in that deficit, but it will not be enough to bring us up to normal,” said Tom Bradshaw, a meteorologist in the Fort Worth office. “We would need another two or three of these systems at least before we could do that.”

The rain was a remnant of tropical storms Manuel and Ingrid, which rolled into Texas from both sides of Mexico late Wednesday. The National Weather Service predicted the rain would ease across most of the state today, except for in South Texas and along the Gulf Coast.

For North Texas, Sunday’s and Monday’s forecasts are similar to today’s: Sunny with highs around 85.

Oncor reported about 100 North Texas customers without power Friday night.

Staff writers Susan Schrock, Bill Miller and Lee Williams contributed to this report.

Mitch Mitchell, 817-390-7752 Twitter: @mitchmitchel3

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