Las Vegas Casinos Hit By Torrential Rain, Drainage Channel Waters Carry Away Pedestrians

Posted on: August 25, 2023, 12:39h. 

Last updated on: August 27, 2023, 12:17h.

rainstorm led to damaged casinos and dangerous conditions in Las Vegas on Wednesday night. Some buildings near the Las Vegas Strip flooded after ceiling tiles collapsed.

A taxi drives through flooded roads
A taxi drives through flooded roads by a Las Vegas wedding chapel. Casino ceilings were damaged in heavy rains. (Image: AP)

Harrah’s Las Vegas, Paris Las Vegas, and Topgolf were among those impacted by the storm, according to initial reports from Las Vegas Issues and local TV station KSNV. Local roadways were flooded, as well.

Caesars Entertainment confirmed ceiling tiles were damaged at the two casinos, KSNV added. The ceilings didn’t collapse, as initially reported.

A video showing the damage has since circulated social media.

Victims Swept Up By Flood Currents

Up to a half-dozen people reportedly got trapped in swift-moving currents inside drainage channels in Las Vegas. None were reported to have died, but most were still unaccounted for as of Thursday.

One incident took place at Koval Lane between Flamingo Road and Sands Avenue. A man and a woman were seen getting carried downstream by the current, according to Las Vegas TV station KLAS.

Several other people were also caught up in the fast-moving water, including a person who firefighters rescued from a channel at the site, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) Lt. Miguel Ibarra told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Another incident involved a man at a channel near Nellis Boulevard between Sahara Avenue and Vegas Valley Drive.

Clark County firefighters, LVMPD officers, and EMTs from an ambulance company took part in the search for the victims. An LVMPD helicopter provided light to assist rescuers, KLAS reported.

The Clark County Fire Department said it sent 28 personnel to the two-channel sites. Five engines, one heavy rescue, one rescue, and two battalion chiefs responded.

Dangerous Conditions

“The water in Clark County’s storm drains and washes moves at an alarming and dangerous rate and many times without warning,” Clark County Fire Department Deputy Chief Thomas Touchstone said in a statement quoted by the Review-Journal.

Victims can be carried downstream faster than emergency responders receive the call and have the opportunity to react. After storm water moves through washes, the debris piles remaining are extensive and reveal areas where a victim moving in the water could have been caught and hidden from crews searching during the event or afterwards.”

Pedestrians should never enter washes and storm drains, whatever the weather, Touchstone added.