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Golden Valley man dies in flooded wash


Dakota Slim

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How dangerous is 1.65 inches of rain?
"
high-water marks along the wash varied between 10 and 20 feet in areas above the normally dry wash bed." 
:yikes: 

KINGMAN — A Golden Valley man was found dead Thursday morning after fast-moving floodwater washed his vehicle off a Mohave County road.

According to the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office, 34-year-old Joshua Allen Carlisle was found dead about two miles from where his vehicle had entered Holy Moses Wash south of Kingman and west of Oatman Road.

The sheriff’s office received reports that an SUV had been swept into the wash and had become submerged. Mohave County Search and Rescue deployed its swift-water technicians and other volunteers. The vehicle was found more than half a mile from the roadway; personnel in a Classic Air Medical helicopter spotted Carlisle’s body.

The sheriff’s office reported that high-water marks along the wash varied between 10 and 20 feet in areas above the normally dry wash bed. According to the county’s ALERT flood warning rain gauges, Holy Moses Wash received about 1.65 inches of rain between I-40 and Oatman Road, near the area where Carlisle’s SUV was swept off the roadway.

Rainfall totals of the storm, that arrived late Wednesday and didn’t clear out of the area until early Thursday, ranged from one-fourth of an inch in the Lake Havasu City area to about a half-inch in the Bullhead City area to more than 2 inches in some parts of the Kingman area.

The rainfall came in a short timeframe, overwhelming the washes, low-lying areas and some streets and roadways. 

As of 3 p.m., at least eight roads maintained by Mohave County remained closed, including a section of Historic Route 66 from I-40 to Mile Post 4. 

At the height of the flooding, more than a dozen county roads were closed.

http://www.mohavedailynews.com/news/golden-valley-man-dies-in-flooded-wash/article_3df0ac6c-c865-11e8-b4e5-f3d4da1277ea.html

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Most people never believe the flash flood stories until they see it happen in front of em..    Bone Dry one minute and under 3ft of water a minute or two later. 

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It is really easy for even an old desert rat to underestimate. Folks that aren't familiar with this crazy drainage system in the west get completely blindsided.

Especially after all these fires. Lots of these canyons have the potential to run way above any historic high water mark in a normal rain. And canyons can flood in good weather from storms miles away. 

Of all the hazards in the desert it is probably one of the most deadly and least obvious.

There is an arroyo just a mile south of my house where three have lost there lives in the past few years. Just trying to drive in a few inches of water on a paved city street. The road was washed out and there was a six foot hole instead of a road. Down the arroyo they went.

I have been swept sideways myself a couple times in water that you would never think was hazardous. You drive along in water that barely covers the stripe in the road and suddenly you are down in a hole with a foot of heavy slurry moving along the bottom. My son and I had a close call last year and we both promised each other we would not cross an running arroyo even if we had to camp until it went dry.

I always wait for another car to come along. If they are stupid enough to drive across I will know if the road is washed out. If not we both wait until someone comes along that is stupid enough to try it. Sooner or later some swinging kielbasa drives across and I can decide whether I want to do it or not. Otherwise I sit patiently and wait for things to drain. 

 

 

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Yep !   The 2/10ths mile road leading to my own home has seen that action.  You drive home and a hour later attempt to drive out and find your self in a 3 or 4 ft rut of running water.  BAD Ju Ju situation.     In my younger (More Stupid) days, I attempted to drive thru some running water.  Seemed to be only a foot or so deep.  Hit it a bit too fast and engine crapped out.  Cranking and cranking she would fire up.  After a few minutes of this the back end of my DATSUN PU started swinging to the side of the road.  Slapped that puppy in 1st gear let out the clutch and used the starter to pull me out of the situation.   I only needed to make it 20ft to get out of the running water.  If that truck was a Automatic It would have ended up off the road down a gully and lost to the elements. 

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38 minutes ago, homefire said:

Yep !   The 2/10ths mile road leading to my own home has seen that action.  You drive home and a hour later attempt to drive out and find your self in a 3 or 4 ft rut of running water.  BAD Ju Ju situation.     In my younger (More Stupid) days, I attempted to drive thru some running water.  Seemed to be only a foot or so deep.  Hit it a bit too fast and engine crapped out.  Cranking and cranking she would fire up.  After a few minutes of this the back end of my DATSUN PU started swinging to the side of the road.  Slapped that puppy in 1st gear let out the clutch and used the starter to pull me out of the situation.   I only needed to make it 20ft to get out of the running water.  If that truck was a Automatic It would have ended up off the road down a gully and lost to the elements. 

You catch the drainage off the flanks of the Cooke's Range don't you? On the north side of town? 

Im pretty familiar with that area and there are a few big arroyos just N-NE of town that can really carry a lot of water. North up the Green Leaf Mine Rd. in general. I hunt carnelian over in that area and have seen a lot of guys from that Hidden Valley Campground mired in running water. I got trapped on high ground in between two of those canyons overnight just a couple years ago. The next morning there were ATV's and camping gear washed all the way to the edge of town and buried under heavy gravel.

Those wide washes don't look like much but they carve out some 8' trenches in that volcanic ash and gravel fast. If a vehicle or a person gets down into one of those ribbon canyons it will grind them up pretty good. It is more than just water too. The big rains carry a thick slurry with brush and sticks and stones as big as your head moving along. Wicked dangerous stuff to get into.

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