DENVER (CBS4)- Street flooding has left some drivers stranded in the high water during an evening storm in the Denver metro area Thursday.

Severe storms hit at about 4:45 p.m. Thursday, bringing heavy rain and hail.

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The heavy rain flooded some areas, including 38th and Kalamath and the Pecos and Interstate 70 intersection.

(credit: CBS)

Copter4 flew over Pecos & I-70 where several cars had pulled to the side of the road and others tried to drive through the standing water.

Around Denver, manhole covers have been floating off on some streets and are being replaced. Drivers should be aware that manhole covers can float off during heavy rainfall and should approach manholes with caution during and following heavy rainfall.

Residents are warned to stay clear of downed lines and report them immediately to Xcel Energy at 1-800-895-1999. If a power line has fallen onto a vehicle, stay away from the vehicle. Seek help immediately by calling 911.

If a tree limb is broken on a public right-of-way, citizens are asked to contact Denver forestry to assess damage and tree safety. For trees on private property, citizens can visit denvergov.org for a list of licensed and insured tree care contractors.

Denver Solid Waste Management collects a limited amount of branches as part of its regular trash collection service. Branches must be no larger than 4 inches in diameter, and they must be cut into lengths of 4 feet or less, bundled and tied, and weigh no more than 40 pounds. For more information about branch disposal visit denvergov.org/trashrecycling

In some areas that are geographical low-points and underpasses, water can’t be expected to disappear down the storm inlets instantly – the pace and volume of the rainfall is too quick and too great to immediately drain off. It takes time for the system to accommodate it.

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Folks can help out by clearing any trash or debris that is visibly blocking storm inlets or gutter flow when it is safe to do so.

In Aurora, there is significant street flooding throughout the city, particularly in the northern parts of the city. Officers are responding to motorists calling 911 because their vehicles have stalled due to the high water.

Power lines are reported down at Victor Way and Center Ave., near Mississippi Ave & I-225. Several manhole covers have floated out of place. Lightning struck a home in the 19500 block E. Batavia Drive. There are no reports of anyone injured.

Flights were grounded at Denver International Airport for a few hours because of the severe storms. Fourteen flights were diverted to Colorado Springs. Flight delays were one hour to 90 minutes at 7 p.m. Thursday.

In Commerce City, police officers were conducting damage assessments. There are several areas which are flooded, power lines and trees are down in several areas in the southern portion of the City. Highway 85 near Mill Road is closed and Fairfax Park is flooded. Crews are working to mitigate downed trees as needed.

As a result of the weather, Commerce City Cultural Council’s Music in the Park event scheduled for 6:30 p.m. this evening at River Run Park has been canceled.

Thursday Storm Photo Gallery

Denver city officials also offer these Safety tips for driving in heavy rain:
If possible, avoid driving. If you must drive, please remember:
• Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars, causing loss of control or possible stalling.
• One foot of water will float most vehicles.
• Two feet of rushing water can sweep away most vehicles — including SUVs and pick-ups.
• If you must drive through water, drive slowly and steadily.
• Avoid driving in water that downed electrical or power lines have fallen in; the electric current passes through water easily.
• Stay off the telephone unless you must report severe injuries.
• Avoid driving in water that downed electrical or power lines have fallen in; the electric current passes through water easily.
• Stay off the telephone unless you must report severe injuries.

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Safety tips for walking or cycling on urban trails:
It’s best not to walk or bike near a river or stream during or following heavy rainfall, even on Denver’s paved urban bike and walking trails; water flow can quickly increase and flooding can occur without notice. GO TO HIGH GROUND!
• Never take shelter in a culvert or in an enclosed space, especially in low elevations by rivers and streams. Always go to higher ground out of the flow of water.
• Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can cause a person to fall.
• If lightning is present, do not stand under or near an isolated tree or group of trees.
• Never allow children to play around streams, drainage ditches or viaducts, storm drains or flooded areas.
What you can do in your neighborhood to help:
• To help prevent flooding in Denver neighborhoods, residents should ensure that gutters are clear of trash or recycling containers, lawn clippings and yard debris.
• Flooding can also be prevented by cleaning up litter, branches or any other loose items that could potentially interfere with storm water drainage on the street.
• Residents should be aware that when rain falls quickly it does take some time for the water to drain off the street due to the volume.