Flash floods hit Pike County

TURKEY CREEK, Ky. – A cloud burst that hit the area early Monday morning around 1:30 a.m. and caused flash flooding at Turkey Creek, Meathouse Road and Dix Fork of Pike County, Kentucky.

Creeks and streams overflowed their banks and there was also some mudslides reported.

Kentucky Division of Highway crews were out on Monday cleaning mud and debris off of State Route 612 at Turkey Creek.

Some homes were also affected as muddy waters rose fast and got into some residences, garages and yards.

Tim and Iravanda Maynard of Turkey Creek were cleaning mud out of their garage, off their deck and out of their swimming pool on Monday. They were just one of several families that had to clean up their property on Monday.

“The water came up fast when the thunderstorm hit,” Mrs. Maynard said.

The National Weather Service (NWS) out of Jackson, Kentucky issued a flash flood watch for most of eastern Kentucky and southwestern West Virginia for Monday night through Tuesday evening. The weather was ripe for more severe thunderstorms with locally heavy downpours possible. Some of the storms could produce gusty winds and heavy rainfall, which can cause local streams and creeks to flood. Ditches could also overflow and cause ponding of water on some roadways.

Doug Tackett, Director of the Pike County Emergency Management, said he was contacted late Sunday night by Rick Green of the Big Creek Volunteer Fire Department and Tim Cline of the Turkey Creek Volunteer Fire Department about the flash flooding and mudslides.

“We want to urge people not to drive through flooded roads,” Tackett said. “You never know how deep the water is or if the road is washed out underneath the muddy water.”

He also encouraged persons to take higher ground if water starts to rise quickly around their homes or trailers. “It’s just common sense,” Tackett advised.

He said most of the flooding was nuisance flooding, but he was still trying to access the damage on Monday afternoon.

Mingo County Homeland Security and Emergency Services Director Doug Goolsby said no flooding had been reported to his office on Monday. However, he had been in contact with the NWS and he said a strong system was heading toward the region on Monday. More storms were in the forecast for Tuesday and the ground is already saturated due to above average rain over the past three weeks.

Here are some safety tips for flash flooding:

• Do not walk or drive through any flooded areas – it takes only six inches of fast-moving flood water to knock over an adult and only two feet to move a vehicle. If a road is closed, find another route.

• Follow the directions of public safety officials – that includes evacuation orders, road closures or requests to stay at home or stay away from certain areas; public safety officials give orders for public well-being. Follow their guidance.

• Pay attention to signage.

(Kyle Lovern is the Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242, ext. 2277 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)

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