KYEM Actively Monitoring Possible Heavy Rain and Additional Flooding Across the Commonwealth

Feb 10, 2020

Credit SaltWire

Gov. Andy Beshear and Kentucky Division of Emergency Management (KYEM) Director Michael Dossett said on Monday that state and local officials continue to monitor flooding conditions from last week’s severe weather event and prepare for the potential heavy rain forecast for this week across the Commonwealth.

The State Emergency Operation Center (SEOC) remains activated to assist impacted counties, collate damage assessments and monitor the incoming weather systems.

With oversaturation of grounds and flooding conditions from last week’s heavy rain, the coming forecasted rain events could cause additional emergency conditions in flood prone areas to include low-lying bodies of water, rivers, streams, culverts or downstream from a dam or levee. KYEM, the National Weather Service (NWS), FEMA, state partners and local officials are in continual discussions and are preparing for the coming weather systems.

“We urge citizens across the Commonwealth to stay vigilant, monitor their local media, listen to local authorities, and heed weather warnings over the next several days,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “I declared a state of emergency to allow effected communities to utilize state resources and we will continue to act swiftly to ensure the safety and security of Kentucky families and communities.”

“We have advance notice of the potential rainfall amounts to make needed preparations for this system,” said Michael Dossett, director of KYEM. “Have a plan, practice your plan and don’t be caught off guard. Be aware of your surroundings. Should officials issue an evacuation order, do not wait, leave immediately.”

Last week, Gov. Beshear declared a state of emergency for the Commonwealth in response to heavy flooding in southeastern Kentucky. So far, 9 counties and 4 cities have declared states of emergencies.  The Governor’s executive order enables the mobilization of state resources to be utilized in support of cities and counties as needed.

Some basic safety tips for flooding awareness:

•Avoid walking or driving through flood waters – TURN AROUND – DON’T DROWN!

•Do not drive over bridges that are over fast-moving floodwaters. Floodwaters can scour foundation material from around the footings and make the bridge unstable.

•Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.

•If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground.

•If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Do not leave the car and enter moving water.

•Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.

For more information about KYEM, visit http://www.kyem.ky.gov

(provided by Commonwealth of Kentucky Governor's Office)