PHOENIX (CBS5) -- Rescue crews were kept busy with several water rescues after a monsoon surge that brought extensive flooding to Arizona, trapped residents in their homes, closed a major freeway, and paralyzed traffic on several surface streets Tuesday morning.
Structures were demolished, heavy equipment was carried away and ranches were covered by the raging waters in New River, where more than 4 inches of rain was reported.
Schools, businesses, homes and other buildings were reported flooded by the waters running off the desert after a storm that brought more than 4 inches of rainfall to the New River area alone.
In one of the more dramatic rescues, a woman could be seen in a house surrounded by the raging waters and waving a white piece of cloth at news helicopters near 46100 N. 43rd Ave.
She and another person were trapped inside while water rushed past the home just below the level of the windows.
Phoenix firefighters lowered two rescuers to the roof of the house from their rescue helicopter, looking for a way to lift them to safety.
After more than an hour, the water receded to the point where crews could just walk up to the front door and lead the people to safety, along with their three dogs and two cats.
An elderly woman in a van became trapped in swift-moving floodwaters near 153rd Avenue and Dynamite Road, and was rescued by Maricopa County sheriff's personnel just before noon Tuesday.
Viewer Weather Photos:
Here are some more precise 24-hour rainfall amounts from around the area:
4.61 inches - New River
4.53 inches - Horsethief Basin
3.66 inches - Seven Springs
3.46 inches - Skunk Creek
3.43 inches - Lake Pleasant
1.73 inches - Pima at Union Hills
1.42 inches - Subn City West
GALLERY: Severe Weather Photos