The severe weather that struck the Denver metro area Wednesday left millions of Mile High City residents scratching their heads and wondering if it was June or really January. Up to eight inches of hail was left on the ground in some areas – prompting road crews to bring out snowplows to clear it off roadways and making locals wonder if it was indeed wintertime again already.
In addition to large hail the size of golf balls and in some cases softballs which pounded the Denver area, there were seven reports of tornadoes across several Colorado counties. The heavy weather that hit the Denver area Wednesday evening into the overnight hours left downed trees and damaged houses in its path as the storm moved through Thursday. The weather was at its worst around midnight. Several city streets were forced closed by flooding which affected Thursday morning’s rush hour.
The Denver Fire Department was scrambling to keep up with the barrage of phone calls which were pouring in Wednesday night. Several home fires had to be put out after lightening strikes which sparked electrical fires inside walls. Firefighters had to literally dig the fires out of the walls in order to stop the flames from spreading further.
In Eibert County, officials reported tornado damage to several homes including two which were missing their roofs and others with smashed out windows. Insurance companies have reported that they have been receiving hundreds of home and vehicle claims in Colorado by Thursday a.m. The beginning of June is the peak time for this type of severe weather in Colorado. Most of the state has been experiencing drought conditions so some rain was welcomed although not in the quantities that most areas received.
When the Colorado skies opened up and unleashed severe weather, it delivered spectacular lightening, very large hail balls and tornadoes. And, if Wednesday wasn’t enough, more severe weather struck again on Thursday afternoon along the Front Range that dumped even more rain and hail and which brought with it high winds. So what’s in store for the weekend? The National Weather Service says that things should calm down as the system moves to the southeast and is followed by warm, dry air. The Service does have three counties under flood warnings however: Arapahoe, Douglas and Elbert due to high river levels and rain-soaked areas situated on low levels.