UPDATED 5:08 p.m. Torrential downpours of up to three inches of rain an hour have flooded streets, trapped people in their cars and caused downed trees and power lines in the Akron-Canton area this afternoon. Akron Police and fire units are swamped with calls to rescue people trapped in their cars by high water.
Akron Police say traffic is blocked both north and southbound on I-77 and 76 at the central interchange by flooding . Due to numerous flooded streets in Akron, police are asking motorists to turn around if they encounter high water and don't drive into any high water.
(Standing water on the Kenmore Leg Eastbound-Photo Credit Stefani Fee)
Streets that are impassable due to high water include Frank Boulevard between White Pond and West Market Street, and Sand Run parkway at Portage Path and North Street near North Howard.
Barberton is also reporting numerous flooded streets at this hour with the same warning. Don't drive into streets with high water.
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A tornado warning was in effect until 5 this afternoon for southern Summit County near Barberton and Green.
Once again police in all area communities are reporting flooded streets with a warning not to drive onto those streets.
The threat of severe weather has cancelled and postponed some outdoor events in the greater Akron area this Wednesday. As of 4:30 Wednesday afternoon, there are approximately 63,000 customers without power according to FirstEnergy.
HERE's a link to FirstEnergy's Outage webpage with interactive tools
There are many areas where highways and low-lying areas flooded due to the heavy rains, including small streams and rivers. Most of the greater Akron area was under a Tornado Warning or Severe Thunderstorm Warning for much of the afternoon, with watches and warnings until at least 5:00 tonight and more severe storms still forecast through the afternoon drive home.
The City of Akron issued an advisory that manhole covers were becoming dislodged because of the severe rush of stormwater.
(City of Akron) Due to the sudden downpour, manhole covers have become dislodged and City crews have been dispatched to correct the situation. However, other manhole covers may become dislodged during this storm and citizens should use extreme caution while driving.
The areas that have been reported are: Cuyahoga Street, Diagonal Road, Arlington/Market, Rt. 8 at the Central Interchange, and Memorial Parkway. If you encounter other areas where manhole covers have been dislodged or extremely dangerous, please contact 3-1-1 from your home phone, or 330-375-2311 from you cell phone. If you are in immediate danger, please call 911.
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Events at Akron's Lock 4 Opening tonight which include Wanda Hunt, are rescheduled for September 11.
Tonight's "Music by the Lake" concert at the Silver Creek Metro Park in Norton has been cancelled. They have no rain date scheduled. In addition, the park's beach is flooded and is not open for lake swimming.
The Music in the Meadow concert at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park that was scheduled for this evening at 6:30 p.m. A news release from the park says the band set to perform tonight, Boy=Girl will now perform on Wednesday, August 14, at 6:15 p.m.