January 17, 2007 Edition

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Heavy rains cause localized flooding


After several days of rainfall, totaling over seven inches in Walnut Ridge, Village Creek rose rapidly Sunday evening to flood this area on Hale Street. Water continued to rise, covering Hale and parts of North Drive, a connecting street, into yesterday afternoon.
TD Photo ~ Amber Adams
Amber Adams
Staff Writer

An estimated seven to eight inches of rain fell over the weekend causing localized flooding throughout Lawrence County.

Hoxie Mayor Donnie Roberts said eight inches of rain was reported in Hoxie. Since they began work on the ditches on Jan. 2, Roberts said flooding was not as bad as usual. Of the few streets that did flood, two had to be closed for a short time.

Michelle Rogers, mayor of Walnut Ridge, said she had not received any reports of flood damage or street closings as of yesterday afternoon. Rogers said she drove around Monday looking at the water levels in different areas of town.

This round of heavy rain has caused some flooding, but not like the storms in September said Steve Jones, Lawrence County Emergency Management Coordinator.

Jones said Spring River is between 20 and 21 feet right now, whereas it was at 27 feet after the September storms. He predicts that Black River will get higher than it did following those heavy rains.

"After the National Weather Service called Friday, we expected it to be a lot worse than it was," Jones said.

Even though water is waist high over some county roads, County Judge Alex Latham agreed that flooding could have been much worse.

Several county roads were closed early this week, including County Road 451, due to high water, said Latham, and a number of them will need heavy maintenance after the water receeds.

"We had more rain than we did in September, so it could have been much worse than it is," Latham said.

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