JERSEY CITY, N.J.(CBSNewYork) — Friday night marked a messy start to Memorial Day Weekend. Skies quickly turned from sunny to cloudy as heavy rain and fierce lightning moved into the area.

The nasty storms led to flash flooding and traffic nightmares in Jersey City.

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Web Extra: Memorial Day Weekend Weather

As CBS 2’s Diane Macedo reported, four vehicles were stuck in the northbound lanes of Route 1 & 9 with water up to their doors.

Heavy rains also caused flash flooding and shut down traffic in both directions. Stranded drivers had to wade through water to get to safety.

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“All of the cars stopped. Nobody could move. The water started flooding. It got up to the seat,” Julianna Acosta said.

Even areas that managed to dodge flash floods were not safe from the storm. In Little Falls, heavy hail pelted cars and forced drivers to keep it slow.

Hail was also a problem in East Orange where the ground looked like it had been littered with packing popcorn.

In New York, bolts of lightning could be seen striking One World Trade Center.

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