Las Vegas flood tears up strip casinos and parking lots


LA VEGAS – Lights on the 130,000 square foot video screen came back on shortly before 11 a.m. Friday, showing computer codes rebooting instead of the usual spectacle visitors have come to expect on the LED canopy suspended above the center Fremont Street Experience pedestrian mall.

Cleanup was well underway after monsoon rains and flash flooding put on a water and light show on Thursday night that residents here won’t soon forget. What started with strangled wind and flashing lightning has finally found its way indoors – with leaky rooftops leading to soaking wet slot machines and soaking wet carpets in several casinos.

Outside, lightning knocked out power to exterior lights at several downtown hotels, including the Golden Nugget. There were a lot of drops light fixtures at Caesars Palace, a shower inside Planet Hollywood and floodwaters that made the Linq Hotel parking lot look like a course of whitewater rapids. A player at the Fremont Hotel and Casino kept playing through the flood.

Water poured into casinos and flooded roads after monsoon rain in Las Vegas on July 28. (Video: Storyful)

The Las Vegas Weather Service warned of wind gusts approaching 70 mph, urging Twitter followers to “shelter now!” Las Vegas Fire and Rescue tweeted that he responded to 330 calls for service, mostly weather-related, and rescued seven people in whitewater.

Several intersections were flooded. The Las Vegas Review Log reported more than 7,000 customers reportedly faced power outages after 10 p.m.

Emi Gross, a burlesque showgirl street performer, was working on the Strip when the heavy rains started falling.

“It’s gone crazy,” said the 19-year-old. “I have never worked as a showgirl in such weather.”

After about half an hour of downpour, she says her bosses called her back to the office, a few miles down the Strip. “We reserved it for the car,” Gross said. “We were in the garage at the Venetian and we still had to put the wipers on because the rain was blowing sideways. We could barely see.

She said that on her way back to the office in the rain, the road was littered with broken down cars.

“I’ve lived in Vegas all my life and I’ve never seen anything like it before,” she said.

Betting activity was mostly back to normal by Friday morning, and casino executives were considering improvements needed to deal with future weather events.

The Fremont Street Experience display lit up as bodies flew on ziplines operated by Slotzilla. The sky was completely clear and cloudless. Workers set up music stages. The typical smell of cannabis permeated the unusually humid air.

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“We’re open for business,” said casino owner Derek Stevens, whose Circa complex had a sports betting video wall transformed into a shimmering fountain that spilled into a water-collecting pool on the carpeted lower level. .

A football match and golf tournament on screens in Circa had large areas blacked out due to damage, with a section of betting odds and game times pixelated beyond recognition. Workmen with measuring tapes circled the damaged areas of the pit marked out with ropes, and a 6-foot blower led a group of smaller blowers.

Instead of seeping into the desert, stormwater tends to accumulate in Las Vegas, which means relatively little precipitation can lead to flooding. Mayor Carolyn Goodman tweeted Friday to tout the “flood control infrastructure” that quickly brings water to Lake Mead.

Monsoon-triggered storms prompted the National Weather Service to issue severe thunderstorm and flash flood warnings Thursday night. Radar showed a narrow but intense swath of thunderstorms that swept through Vegas around 8:30 p.m. local time North.

Harry Reid International Airport received 0.32 inches of rain – about its average amount for all of July – while “a few pockets in the city picked up over an inch,” the weather service wrote.

Thursday marked the second night of monsoon storms in the city, with more expected in the southwest, according to the National Weather Service.

Nevada’s summer was marked by drought; Lake Mead water levels have reached their lowest point since 1937, according to NASAexponent three sets of human remains in the tank since May.

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On the other side of the country, disastrous floods in eastern Kentucky has killed at least 16 people since Wednesday. Historic rainfall around St. Louis on Tuesday led to flash flood who killed a person. Both showers are considered Rain events 1 in 1,000 years.

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