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Muskogee Emergency Managers Preparing For Winter Weather, Flooding

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Some communities are preparing for heavy rains while others are monitoring freezing rain and ice. Some communities are preparing for heavy rains while others are monitoring freezing rain and ice.
Muskogee's emergency manager, Mark Bolding, makes sure he loops in other city departments when the weather service holds their storm briefings. Muskogee's emergency manager, Mark Bolding, makes sure he loops in other city departments when the weather service holds their storm briefings.
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma -

The National Weather Service office in Tulsa is providing daily briefings on the incoming winter weather to emergency managers in northeastern Oklahoma.

Some communities are preparing for heavy rains while others are monitoring freezing rain and ice.

In Muskogee, emergency management is spending its afternoons preparing for ice, severe storms and flooding, thanks to meteorologists with the National Weather Service.

Muskogee's emergency manager, Mark Bolding, makes sure he loops in other city departments when the weather service holds their storm briefings.

"We share it with our schools, we share it with our public works. We get them prepared whether it's going to be icy weather or for flooding weather," he said.

The biggest concern for Bolding is flooding as roads on the south side of town are prone to flash flooding.

The last time heavy rain hit the city several drivers were stranded in the flood waters. Bolding wants to make sure drivers remember the dangers of flooded roads.

"Not only does it wash them off the road, but we've got the responsibility of sending first responders in there to rescue them, and we also put them in danger,” he said. “So, by all means, if you see high water, turn the other direction."

If Muskogee gets flooding, but other communities get power outages due to ice, state-owned generators can wheel up anywhere to anyone that needs them. The generators can be used to power up water pumping stations and keep essential services running.

Bolding said, “We keep those maintained and operational. They may take those generators and pre-position them, let's say in the Tulsa area, closer to where the ice storms are going to be, where they suspect the power outages are going to be. This goes on behind the scenes all the time."

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