Water flowing in the Santa Cruz River has risen to 10 feet at the Trico Road bridge Saturday morning and is expected to rise to about 16 feet later today northwest of Tucson, according to the National Weather Service.
The rising water has brought concerns of possible flooding along the river in the area near the bridge and downstream into Pinal County.
Heavy rain runoff in the river is from Friday night storms south of Tucson. The stormwater filled the Nogales, Ariz., wash that leads to the Santa Cruz and caused some minor flooding near that city Friday night
A flash flood watch remains in effect for the Tucson area this morning.
Storms swept through Tucson Friday night, flooding creeks and washes, stranding motorists in rising water and knocking out electricity to thousands of utility customers.
Rushing water in the Tanque Verde Creek on the northeast side pushed water levels to near 12 feet overnight, according to the weather service. Water in the creek had dropped by Saturday morning.
Authorities received numerous calls for swift-water rescues, primarily on the northeast and southeast sides, including one call where several vehicles were stuck in a wash near East Tanque Verde and North Houghton roads, according to the Pima County Sheriff's Department. No serious injuries were immediately reported.
The Tucson Fire Department responded to six swift-water rescue calls Friday night and early Saturday. The department also assisted other agencies in several calls.
Just before midnight, public safety personnel discovered an overturned care in a wash at East Speedway near North Houghton Road.
Fire crews checked the car, but there was no one in the vehicle.
Corona de Tucson fire crews had to rescue several people stranded in a car in water up to its hood in the 14000 block of South Houghton Road southeast of Tucson.
The heaviest rain fell on the northeast side along the Tanque Verde Creek, with some areas in Tucson receiving more than an inch of rain, according to the National Weather Service.
More than 3 inches of rain fell in some areas of Redington Pass. Four inches fell in the Rincon Mountains as of about 10 p.m., according to county flood-control rain gauges.
Tucson International Airport received more than a half-inch of rain Friday night, according to the National Weather Service.
Some flooding in the Tanque Verde Creek was expected as far as Sabino Canyon Road, the weather service said.
The Agua Caliente Wash, which flows into the Tanque Verde Creek, and the Pantano Wash on the southeast sides also had deep flowing water.
The storm also slammed the southwest side, knocking out power to about 3,900 customers in the area, according to Tucson Electric Power.
The Tucson area could see more heavy rain today.
The forecasts call for mostly cloudy conditions with scattered showers and thunderstorms during the day and numerous showers and thunderstorms at night, according to the weather service.
There also will be a 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms on Sunday. A flash-flood watch was to be in effect in the Tucson area through tonight.
Contact reporter Jamar Younger at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 573-4115.