Strong thunderstorm hit Riverton with heavy rain, hail; Streets & parking lots flooded

(Riverton, Wyo.) – A gully washer hit Riverton right around 4:30 this afternoon with heavy rain and up to half-inch size hail, leaving in its wake flooded streets and parking lots, water coming into businesses, shredded flowerbeds and gardens and at least two reports of roof damage. The National Weather Service also reported a peak wind gust of 56 knots during the height of the storm.

According to State Farm Insurance local agent Mike Yowell, before the storm was over he had already received two reports of roof damage, one from a roof being replaced in the country club area. “Oh this doesn’t look good,” he said.

The rain, measured at one location north of town at nearly one inch, fell in about 20 minutes, causing the city’s storm sewer system to back up and creating big lakes at major intersections and along curbs.

Hail built up on the doorstep of west facing buildings, including at Injury Prevention Resources on North Broadway where the hail was piled up next to the front door. Most was of the pea-size variety, but some were much larger.

The Riverton Fire Department was called to Honor Farm Road where a tree branch had broken off and landed on a power line, catching the branch on fire initially, and then smoking as the current surged through the limb. A Rocky Mountain Power repair crew arrived at the scene shortly after the fire department.

Photos by Ernie Over. Click to enlarge.