As area rivers are overflowing or near cresting prompting an ongoing flooding threat in many areas, several water rescues were reported in Lincoln County Wednesday and a tornadic storm also impacted Seminole County Wednesday evening.
Seminole County Emergency Management reported a tornado touched down north of Cromwell Wednesday evening, with minimal damage reported.
In many areas, though, rising waters are an ongoing concern as massive amounts of rain have fallen throughout the state.
The Oklahoma Mesonet shows a five-day total of 5.40 inches of rainfall in Chandler, with a five-day total of 1.81 inches in Shawnee. But many other parts of central Oklahoma have seen six to eight inches of rainfall in that same time, contributing to the swollen rivers and creeks where that water flows.
Long after storms move out of the area, flooding can present issues for days as the overflow spills into every low spot in the state, especially fields and ditches near the river. Residents should remain cautious of low areas, taking alternate routes when possible.
Shawnee/Pottawatomie County Emergency Management Director Donald D. Lynch said river banks are near flood stage in several areas.
• Flood Stage on the North Canadian River, at Harrah, is 14 feet. Tuesday afternoon he said that area was at 17.4 feet.
“The crest is expected to be at 19.4 feet Thursday morning,” he said. The river is expected fall below flood stage on Friday morning.
Lynch said rural agricultural land and roads near the river in northwestern Pottawatomie County are being impacted by flood waters at this time.
• Flood Stage at the North Canadian River, at Shawnee, is 16 feet, he said. On Tuesday afternoon the stage the river was at was 11.35 feet.
“The river is expected to crest near 16 feet on Friday morning,” he said.
• Little River, near Tecumseh, has a Flood Stage of 11 feet. Lynch said the stage Tuesday afternoon was 9.32 feet. It was expected to crest at 10.4 feet Tuesday evening, he said.
Flooded and washed out roadways continued to impact many areas in Lincoln County Wednesday, including 3470 Road between Sparks and Chandler, which was covered by water in several different areas along that stretch of roadway on Wednesday. Additionally, other roadways remained closed Wednesday because of high water, including SH 18 south of Chandler and SH 18 north of Chandler. As conditions change, drivers are reminded to never drive into areas of high water because there may not be a solid road remaining underneath all that water.
Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management continues to ask residents impacted by the recent storms to report damages to their property at damage.ok.gov or by calling 211. Reporting damage helps local and state emergency managers better coordinate response and recovery efforts. Residents can report damage to homes, businesses or agriculture through the online survey.