Residents Ordered To Evacuate Their Homes

Monday, July 2nd 2007, 10:28 am
By: News On 6

The Neosho River is rising in the town of Miami. Families living in about 600 homes are being told they should evacuate, as near-record flooding is expected by either late Tuesday or early Wednesday. Imagine that you have a day, maybe a day-and-a-half if you're lucky, to find a truck or a trailer and move everything you have, with no warning. The News On 6’s Steve Berg reports that's the situation for hundreds of people in Miami right now.

For Miami residents like Linda Maxon, the evacuation is a grueling physical and mental ordeal.

"We have been at it since yesterday, probably about 3:30, all night long," Maxon said.

Undeterred by anything people can do, the water makes a methodical march over the riverbanks. Over such a wide area, it appears to creep up slowly, but officials say it's rising nearly a half-foot every hour.

The river is already well above flood stage at the Step Ford Bridge, north of Miami and rising fast. They expect it will crest sometime Wednesday at 27 and a half feet.

"Just as a historical point of reference, in 1986, which was the second most devastating flood of record, the height of the river went to 26.26, so in essence we're looking at a foot and quarter higher than the second most devastating flood of record,” said Miami city manager Mike Spurgeon.

"If it goes at the rate they say it will go, from one source, it will be about five feet from the top eave of this house,” said Maxon. "We're done for. I had no flood insurance this time."

The people being told to evacuate were told they should try to be out by Monday night.

The Red Cross has a shelter at First Christian Church in Miami. For more information, call their hotline at 1-800-494-0275.

Watch the video: Deadline Set For Residents To Evacuate

WEB EXTRA: Aerials Of Flooding In Miami

For more flooding information, check out our STORM ZONE web page.