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Downpour floods streets, knocks out power

FARGO--Sunday's sky unleashed more than two inches of rain on the metro area, flooding some streets and causing a brief power outage.

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Fargo North High sophomores Ruth Hegstad, left, and Reedyn Hanson race through a pool of rainwater in Percy Godwin “Elephant” Park on Sunday afternoon, May 17, 2015, in Fargo. Fargo received almost 2 inches of rain within three hours Sunday morning. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

FARGO-Sunday’s sky unleashed more than 2 inches of rain on the metro area, flooding some streets and causing a brief power outage.

In Moorhead, cars were creating wakes on 20th Street, which was closed Sunday morning from 12th Avenue South to Main Avenue, said Moorhead police Sgt. Scott Kostohryz.
"It was pretty deep," he said. “It was probably as bad as I’ve ever seen it."
Kostohryz said the railroad underpass at Center Avenue was also closed to traffic because of standing water. Most of the water there and on 20th Street had dissipated by 2 p.m., he said.
The steady, heavy downpour flooded a substation, which cause about 1,500 homes and businesses, including American Crystal Sugar, to lose power in north Moorhead, according to Moorhead Public Service.
The electricity went out just before 11:15 a.m., and power was restored to residential customers by 11:45 a.m. and to American Crystal by 12:35 p.m., the utility said.
In Fargo, a Forum photographer spotted what smelled and looked like raw sewage coming up from manholes on Fourth Street North near the downtown public library. Orange traffic cones had been placed on the manhole covers.
Sgt. Chris Nichtern said Fargo police were unaware of the sewage and that he’d heard of no significant problems caused by the rain. An employee who answered the phone at the city’s wastewater division said there was no one available to comment on the matter.
Pete Speicher, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Grand Forks, said the Fargo airport received 2.1 inches of rain on Sunday. And since May 10, the airport has tallied a total of 3.9 inches of rain, Speicher said.
This month’s soaking rains have ended drought conditions that parched much of the Red River Valley. The forecast called for the Fargo-Moorhead area to remain dry through the end of the week, Speicher said.
On Sunday night, snow was falling in western and central North Dakota, including Minot and Bismarck. The flakes were not expected to fall any further east than Valley City, Speicher said.

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