Deluge floods streets, traps drivers, closes roads

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The following roads are expected to remain closed throughout the night:

 - US 41/50th St will remain closed NB and SB at Adamo Dr due to flooding. Unknown when the road will be reopened at this time. 

-  EB and WB Hillsborough Ave/SR 580 will be closed near the Veteran's Expy due to flooding.  Unknown when the roadway will be reopened

Hours and hours of heavy rain soaked parts of the Bay Area on Saturday, turning an already saturated mess into a dangerous flood.

It was late this morning when a line of storms began streaming in off the Gulf of Mexico, bringing high winds, lightning, and seemingly unending rain.  The deluge continued for several hours, dropping an estimated 6 inches of rain in some places -- far more than the soaked ground could handle.

Many neighborhoods in a swath from Pinellas to Hillsborough County were soon turned into rivers and lakes, catching many residents and drivers off guard.

Tampa police say they received numerous 911 calls from motorists trapped in stranded vehicles.  One car even caught fire amidst the floodwaters on Kennedy Boulevard.

"I can't stress it enough -- if you don't have to be out on the roads right now, avoid them. At all costs," FOX 13 meteorologist Mike Bennett warned.

By evening, a break in the rain had allowed some of the floods to start ever-so-slowly receding, but with more moisture out in the gulf, it was not clear how long the respite might last. Quick-moving storms were expected to continue moving through the area tonight, and rain remains in the forecast Sunday.

A flood watch remains in effect across the entire Bay Area until 8 p.m. Sunday.