Colorado has been experiencing exceptionally heavy rains this week, causing all sorts of problems for the state. As the water runs down the Rocky Mountains towards populated areas, massive flooding in cities like Boulder has forced thousands to relocated to higher ground. The rain has been coming down since Monday and picked up late Wednesday night.

But some of the heaviest precipitation was recorded in Boulder, where at least 9-1/2 inches of rain had fallen by Thursday afternoon, with higher amounts in the foothills west of town, [Weather Service meteorologist Kari] Bowen said. Boulder typically averages just an inch and a half of rainfall for all of September, she said.

The flooding has claimed at least three victims so far—one was found in a collapsed building, another drowned, and a third was found 100 miles south of Boulder.

On Thursday, amidst reports of flooding and multiple dam collapses, the University of Colorado's Boulder campus closed for the day, as did the city's public schools and local government facilities. The university evacuated students in ground-floor rooms and stated that multiple buildings had suffered damage. Small towns such as Jamestown (population: 200) were evacuated entirely, while others like Lyons, north of Boulder, where cut off by flooded roadways.