FORT LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) - A nasty night of downpours left several communities in Broward County flooded and wreaked havoc for travelers at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

According to the National Weather Service, Thursday marked the wettest day in July on record as flash floods on complicated commutes for drivers, causing vehicles to stall in the floodwaters.

7News cameras and cellphone video captured stranded vehicles from Fort Lauderdale to Hallandale Beach.

Mike Noriega said his mother was caught in the soggy conditions in a Dania Beach parking lot.

“I got an instant call from my mom saying that the car just stopped and she needed help, so I just ran out of work straight over here,” he said.

Bolts of lightning and heavy rainfall made a mess, especially for those trying to head home.

Noriega said his mother was not the only one stuck in the parking lot.

“[Another driver] was in the same condition. He was down by my car and just stopped, dead-stopped, because his vehicle just stopped on him,” he said, “and so, I helped him out, and he helped me out, so luckily, it worked out in the end, and now I’m just waiting for the tow truck.”

Residents in Hollywood saw floodwaters rise high enough to reach their garage doors. It’s a mess they’ll have to tackle once the waters recede.

Thursday night, Hollywood reported nearly seven inches of rain.

A flood watch remains in effect for much of mainland South Florida until noon on Friday.

The street flooding led to frustration for many travelers heading to FLL.

“It looks like I’ve missed my flight with the floods,” said traveler Darryl Lewis Global.

The inclement weather also caused flights to be delayed. As of late Thursday night, FLL had more than 285 flight delays.

“I hope I can still take my vacation,” said traveler Staci Zavattaro.

The relentless rain came down for hours, forcing airport officials to shut down the entrance ramp to the arrival and departure level near East Perimeter Road.

Not far away from FLL, 7News cameras captured first responders helping a family to drier land, one by one, after their SUV got stuck in the floodwaters.

Among those who were stranded while heading to FLL was Global. He said his Lyft driver made the decision to pull over and avoid stalling out.

“He’d been pressing through some of the floods, and he got in a little deeper here, where you can see a lot of the cars that are – I guess they’re stopped and couldn’t go any further,” said Global, “and so, he wasn’t trying to risk it, and we’re stuck.”

“It’s kind of scary to be sitting on the plane and seeing all the lightning, you know, around us,” said Zavattaro.

Zavattaro said his flight was initially delayed, then canceled, shortening what was supposed to be a 10-day vacation in the Bahamas.

“As we were sitting on the plane, a lot of people started booking other flights and, I think once – the computers got wind of the demand, those ticket prices started going up,” she said, “so it’s just kind of the snowball effect, and now we have to find another hotel for the night, so it’s just kind of these compounding costs that none of us anticipated.”

FLL officials advised travelers to check their flight status with the airlines before heading to the airport.

As of Friday morning, there have been 37 flight delays and only four cancellations at FLL.

Police advised drivers to turn around and seek an alternate route, if possible, whenever they come across standing water that looks too deep for their vehicles.

Fort Lauderdale experienced a record-breaking rainfall of over half a foot on Thursday, contributing to a total rainfall measurement of 65.64 inches for the year, surpassing its typical annual rainfall of 60.95 inches.

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