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Water in streets spawns dozens of accidents across valley

Metro investigates an accident on Desert Inn near the Boulevard Mall that involved a tour bus and five vehicles. A dozen people were transported to hospitals. (Sandra Gonzalez / MyNews3.com)
Metro investigates an accident on Desert Inn near the Boulevard Mall that involved a tour bus and five vehicles. A dozen people were transported to hospitals. (Sandra Gonzalez / MyNews3.com)
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Updated: 8/18/2013 7:20 pm
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & Mynews3.com) -- Rainfall was thought to be a factor in dozens of accidents spread across the Las Vegas Valley late Sunday afternoon.

"This is what happens when it rains," Metro Lt. Craig Klatt told News 3. "Water gets on the pavement and people just don't slow down."

The most serious accidents appeared to be on Desert Inn just north of the Boulevard Mall and another on Interstate 15 near Sloan.

The Desert Inn accident occurred about 5:25 p.m. and involved a tour bus and five vehicles. A dozen people were transported to Sunrise Hospital. None of the injuries were thought to be serious, Metro Officer Laura Meltzer said.

Klatt said the driver of the tour bus told officers he had smoked spice earlier in the day, meaning rain may have been only one of the factors.

"He was transported and is being investigated for intoxication," Klatt said.

In the accident near Sloan shortly about 4 p.m., a man was headed north on the I-15 when he lost control and rolled into the gravel center median. He was ejected and landed in the southbound center lane across a concrete median. A woman was able to crawl out of the car.

"He was unrestrained and he was airlifted to UMC in critical condition," Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Jeremie Elliott said. "I believe heavy rain was a factor in the accident."

NHP said another accident on I-15 about 10 miles north of Valley of Fire resulted in one person being ejected and another being trapped in the vehicle.

Largely because of the rain, NHP reported six injury accidents between 4 and 5 p.m. while Metro reported just as many in about the same time frame.

Early during the storm the Henderson area and east side of the valley appeared to get the heaviest amounts of rain, but much of the area received considerable rainfall before skies started to clear near sunset.

Drivers should never attempt to pass through flooded areas, said National Weather Service spokesman Reid Wolcott.

Monsoon activity is expected to pick up in the valley and the surrounding area through Tuesday, meaning there is an increased chance of thunderstorms.

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