Remnants of tropical wave bring rain, flooding

Localized flooding created some major problems in Orange County on Friday as remnants of tropical wave crossed over the Florida Peninsula.

Parts of Central Florida saw cars stranded on roadway, storm drains clogged and paddle boarders having a little fun, taking advantage of all the water.  The heavy, steady rain on Friday made parts of Orlando feel less like roads and more like lakes.

"This is ridiculous. I'm thinking it's just the sewage," said one driver, who had to turn her car around while driving along Rio Grande Ave, near Oak Ridge Road. "It's a mess! It's a mess! What are they going to do about it?"

The road flooded several feet, causing cars to get stuck and break down. Orange County Fire Rescue helped nine drivers between 3 and  6 p.m., who were stranded when their cars' electrical systems shorted from all the water. 

Some cars were towed while other cars steered clear altogether. Others figured if you can't beat them, join them. Then, there were people like Reginald Stoakley, stepping-in when no one else did, finding the source of the flooding near a shopping center off Orange Blossom Trail. 

"The mulch built up on it. The water wasn't draining like it was supposed to so I just started removing it by hand," said Stoakley, who kept at it for an hour until some of the water receded. "Basically, what I'm doing is I'm giving back to a community that gave to me. That's all I can do."

On Rio Grande Ave., it took a while, but deputies finally arrived to close the flooded section of the road. Orange County Fire Rescue says no one was hurt. 

Food advisories were issued by the National Weather Service for southern Lake, Orange, and southwestern Seminole counties.

"The good news is, it's not severe, but it is persistent," said FOX 35 Chief Meteorologist Glenn Richards. "Really, the only lightning strikes are offshore."

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) says Central Florida will be in for a wet weekend as moisture continues to move in from the south.

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Forecasters are watching another system far out in the Atlantic Ocean that remained mostly disorganized late Friday. The area of low pressure is located several hundred miles east-southeast of the Lesser Antilles.  


Although upper-level winds are expected to be only marginally conducive for development, this system could become a tropical depression early next week while it moves west-northwestward toward the Leeward Islands.  The NHC says there is a 40 percent chance of formation over the next five days.

"Most of the models take this system and rip it apart over the next two to three afternoons. A couple of models do take it into the northern Caribbean and eventually into the western Atlantic, but also long term rips it apart," Richards added. "We'll keep an eye on it but the probability has gone down."

Highs are much lower than we would typically see this time of year, hovering around the low to mid 80s on Friday. Rain coverage looks to be in the range of 70 percent plus all across the region.