Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said on Twitter that he had declared a state of emergency, and the Howard County Fire Department said it had summoned first responders from as far away as Northern Virginia to assist in rescue efforts.
For the second time three years, Main Street in Ellicott City has been transformed into a raging river due to waves of thunderstorms unloading torrential rain.
Meteorologist Jonathan Belles said more than six inches of rain fell in under two hours between Ellicott City and Baltimore. Howard County Fire and EMS urged residents to evacuate downtown or move to higher ground while rescue teams swarmed the area.
Authorities have no immediate report of any injuries or fatalities though information is still preliminary.
Flash flooding covers the intersection of Rogers Avenue and Main Streets in Ellicott City, Md., May 27, 2018. "We're doing the best we can to help anybody that needs help", County Executive Allan Kittleman said. The area was still working to recover after being devastated by flooding in 2016. Two people were killed.
Doppler estimated rainfall in Ellicott City through 5:15 p.m.
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"Strong storms bringing heavy rain & potential for flash floods are now moving across central Maryland".
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood emergency late in the afternoon for Ellicott City, a town 10 miles west of Baltimore, warning of an "extremely risky and potentially catastrophic situation".
The 2016 flood spurred an influx of giving to rebuild in Ellicott City.
Main Street in Ellicott City saw flooding that almost reached the top of a stop sign. Water, cleaning supplies and flashlights are among the items needed most.
WBAL's Bill Vanko lives in the area, and he saw the flooding up close and personal.