Winnipeg thunderstorm floods mall, underpasses, streets
Polo Park mall, Higgins Avenue underpass flooded by heavy rains
A torrential downpour flooded Polo Park mall in Winnipeg Thursday evening, as well as a number of underpasses and roads.
At least five transit buses were backed up after the underpass at Higgins Avenue and Main Street flooded. At least two vehicles could be seen trapped in deep water in the underpass.
Winnipeg was under a severe thunderstorm warning around 6:30 p.m., with between 50 to 75 millimetres of rain expected to fall Thursday night.
The waters flooded Polo Mark mall, forcing some customers out of stores so staff could deal with the water. Several businesses, including a hair salon, were ankle-deep in water.
Mall officials tweeted that the heavy rain caused an unexpected roof leak and stores between the mall's south entrance and the Apple store were closed as a result. Crews were cleaning up almost immediately after the leak.
By 8:30 p.m., Polo Park tweeted it was, "Business as usual" except for a few flooded stores, including department store Sears.
The University of Winnipeg also got some unexpected water in several campus buildings.
A university statement said, "Campus security and facilities personnel are currently assessing the extent of damage," and promised to update students throughout the night and morning.
The Kenaston underpass also flooded Thursday evening around 7 p.m., but cars were able to pass through the area slowly.
Winnipeg police tweeted a warning to drivers: "Please use caution on roadways tonight! Emergency crews attending to numerous intersections w/lights out." They also warned motorists not to attempt to drive through flooded underpasses.
Rains finally died off around 8 p.m. as did thunderstorm warnings for the area, but thunderstorm watches remained in effect after 9 p.m.
Winnipeg is forecast to see more rain on Sunday and Monday as well.