High Water Doesn't Stop Some Motorists


Wednesday, June 27th 2007, 6:26 am
By: News On 6


Another day of rain and another day of flooding across eastern Oklahoma. Moderate to heavy rain fell across much of eastern Oklahoma early Wednesday. With that rain, came flooding. The National Weather Service says all eastern Oklahoma continues under a flash flood watch. That watch has now been extended thru Friday morning.

In Broken Arrow, city crews closed down more than a dozen streets because of the high water. One trouble spot was 101st and Garnett. Broken Arrow Police closed the intersection due to floodwaters flowing across the roadway. That did not stop motorists from driving thru the high water.

The News On 6 was there when a driver in one car tried to get around a couple of barricades. Broken Arrow Police say she only made it a few feet into the intersection before her car started floating. Fortunately, the driver was able to get out of her car and wade through the water to safety.

Watch the video: Motorists Driving In Flood Water

Broken Police Captain Greg Sipes says do not risk driving into high water, instead find another way. "They can always stop and talk to an officer. We'll try and give them the most updated information we have as far as what routes are clear and also just try and find another way. If you pull up and see a sign and see water, don't drive through that water."

Police say it is also a good idea to know ahead of time different ways you can get out of your neighborhood and into work if you need to. Officials say when the rain situation is changing, crews are checking flood-prone areas every 15 to 30 minutes to see if barriers need go up, or can come back down.

Broken Arrow Police note that just because a barrier is not up, does not mean its safe. It could just be that crews have not gotten to the flooded road yet, so motorists still need to be careful.

National Weather Service forecasters say dry conditions for eastern Oklahoma are not expected before the weekend.

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The Oklahoma Department of Transportation has released of road closings across the state because of high water.

Cherokee County - SH-80, between Hulbert and Ft. Gibson (near Hulbert on the north end, close to Wildwood Recreation Area). Drivers are using SH-51 and SH-251A as detours. Can access the recreation area.

Seminole County - SH-9A at Salt Creek between Maud and Konawa.

Okfuskee County - SH-48, one mile north of I-40 at the North Canadian River near Bearden.

Pittsburg County - SH-31, five miles west of McAlester. Detour signs in place near Haywood. Traffic detoured to county road and on to US-270.