Green Country Counties Help Residents Prepare For Potential Flooding

Wednesday, June 17th 2015, 11:32 pm
By: News On 6

Flooding preparation started early as emergency management leaders in Okmulgee County have the emergency operations center fully staffed and crews ready to be dispatched at a moment's notice.

Beginning at 8:30 Wednesday morning, emergency management set up five barns across the county where volunteers filled thousands of sandbags for anyone who stopped by needing them.

They will be needed as the area is not getting much of a break from our historic rain in May, and now as Tropical Depression Bill moves through.

6/17/2015 Related Story: Major Flooding Event Expected Across Eastern Oklahoma

Holly Kinnaird and her family were just one of several who loaded up their trunks with sandbags Wednesday.

"It's never been this bad so we don't know what to expect," she said.

For close to eight hours, Okmulgee County emergency management and volunteers helped fill close to 4,000 bags with sand to give to people looking to offset possible flooding.

6/17/2015 Related Story: Okmulgee County Offers Bags And Sand To Residents

Vanessa Sadler just moved to Morris from Broken Arrow less than a month ago and she hoped to fit as many sandbags as possible in her SUV.

"Last time there was water at our doorstep, so now were trying to find a way to divert the water from the front of the door to side of house cause wasn't enough time to dig ditches," Sadler said.

Shortly after the volunteers wrapped up the rain began.

Off 6th Street in Okmulgee, manhole covers were ripped off thanks to the force of the water sending it pouring into the roadways.

At dripping Spring Dam, the flow of water is significantly stronger than normal but not as bad as it has been in the past according to some who live in the area.

So while people wait to see what the evening and early morning hours will bring hopefully the early precautions taken will be of some help.

"Today they got more barricades and signs and we've got trucks loaded and ready to go," said Okmulgee County Emergency Manager, Tim Craighton.

Preparing for the worst and hoping for the best in Okmulgee County where we will be keeping a close eye on things through the next few hours.

Over in Wagoner County, the sand bagging machine ordered months ago by the emergency management office arrived Wednesday, and they didn't waste time putting it to work.

6/17/2015 Related Story: Wagoner County Seeing Big Demand For Sand Bags

They have about 50,000 empty bags to fill and the Holliday Sand Plant donated 50 tons of sand.

The agency has been using volunteers like the Coweta football team to fill the bags.

Emergency workers have already passed out the more than 4,000 bags they had left over from the last storm.

In Sand Springs, the city went door to door, warning people and posting fliers to remind residents that sirens will sound if any dangerous weather is anticipated.

They also had information on what to do if evacuations are necessary.

To get emergency warnings from the city of Sand Springs, you can register on the Sand Springs Police website.

The city of Bixby urged citizens to avoid areas prone to Flash Flooding. Those areas include:

  • The Snake Creek watershed
  • Haikey Creek Park area, specifically the entrances at 121st and 131st
  • 114th Street, west of Mingo
  • 119th Street, east of Mingo
  • Mingo, between 121st and 131st
  • 125th Street and Sheridan
  • 164th and Memorial
  • Harvard, between 143rd and 151st

The city said barricades will be placed when city crews determine an area is impassable due to high water.