Fayette County

Lexington received a historic rainfall Thursday night. Here are the records set.

A natural moat was created around The Kentucky Castle in Versailles Friday after heavy rain Thursday night.
A natural moat was created around The Kentucky Castle in Versailles Friday after heavy rain Thursday night. Lexington Herald-Leader

About 3.5 inches of rain fell in Lexington in 90 minutes Thursday night, setting records and causing flash flooding that quickly cleared up by Friday morning.

Thursday’s rainfall of 3.42 inches set a new single-day record for Oct. 4., and the amount made Thursday the second-wettest of any October day in Lexington history, according to the National Weather Service. Much of the rain fell from 10:30 p.m. to 12 a.m.

The wettest October day in Lexington history occurred in 2007 with 4.33 inches, the weather service said. The previous record amount for an Oct. 4 date was a mere 1.44 inches in 1990.

The rain and subsequent flooding Thursday night into Friday morning led to 10 non-injury crashes and two injury crashes, Lexington police said. Crews also made four water rescues of people trapped in their vehicles.

Rain fell throughout the whole city and was not concentrated in one particular area, police said.

Lexington’s Public Safety Operation Center on Cisco Road received a direct lightning strike around 11:30 p.m., according to Public Safety Commissioner Ken Armstrong. The strike knocked down radio communications between dispatchers and first responders for less than a minute before dispatchers realized and switched to hand-held radios, Armstrong said.

In the minute there was not communication between dispatch and first responders, there were no emergencies. The malfunctioning equipment did not affect calls coming into 911, Armstrong said.

Armstrong said the city Friday was trying to determine need equipment repairs or replacements. He hopes the primary system will be running again in a few days, but the hand-held devices were not adversely affecting day-to-day operations.

“Most first responders didn’t even know it happened,” Armstrong said. “It was truly an act of God. You plan for those things and our training worked how it was supposed to. Citizens wouldn’t have even known it happened.”

In nearby Versailles, one Twitter user said his stay at the Kentucky Castle was cut short because of standing water in his chalet from the rain. Matt Dawson, co-owner of the Castle, confirmed one chalet received some flooding after water got in under the door. He said the chalet was cleaned quickly..

“We were much more fortunate than other people,” Dawson said Friday morning.

Water also collected in lower areas on the castle property, creating what some called a natural moat. Dawson said the water will likely be there for a couple of days.

Thursday’s rain followed the wettest September on record for Lexington, according to the weather service. More than 10 inches of rain fell last month.

It's against the law to use your hazard lights while driving. Be safe, don't drive in the rain with hazard lights on.

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