The heavy rains of Monday are over but the memory, and water, lingers on in Pender County. Some roadways still had standing water in Surf City on Tuesday. That's because six to nine inches of rain fell yesterday, which is a lot of water to handle in a short period of time. In Surf City, the fire department was kept busy making sure all the Labor Day visitors to the island could navigate the roadways safely on their trip home. “We had road closings and of course traffic directions to get the people around and get them off the island. Because of the Labor Day weekend we had a lot of traffic exiting the island,” said Chief Joe Rivenbark. The heavy rains were so intense, they reminded some residents of much bigger storms. “It was equal to the rains of hurricanes that come through. Fortunately we didn't have the wind to deal with,” Rivenbark said. The high rainfall totals are very similar to those seen in Wilmington in July that caused flooding along New Center Drive. Although the amount of rain is similar to tropical systems, its actually another mechanism meteorologists call 'training' that produces this heavy rain. Very simply put, training involves heavy thunderstorms passing over the same location for a long period of time. When water is on the roadways it's especially important to abide by the turn around, don't drown policy. Rivenbark warned, “Don't do the roadways, because it will wash over you. It’s not safe. Just because you can see water, you don't know how deep it is.” And folks in Pender County hope they don’t see high water like this for a long time. The town of Surf City expects to return to business as usual over the next several days as the water continues to subside.
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