Motorists should heed flood warnings

Published 9:11 pm Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The rain came Monday and Tuesday — and kept coming.

More than 10 inches fell in some parts of the county at last count, and that estimate could inch higher.

Streets were flooded, some cars appeared to be flood-damaged and trees were at risk of falling due to saturated ground. Roofs leaked, storm drains overflowed and parts of roads washed away.  All in all, it was a mess. And likely will be for days to come.

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Early Tuesday morning, the city’s street, fire and police departments were hard at work closing off dangerous sections of roads and making sure residents were safe. Emergency crews also helped a couple families get out of their homes as flood waters were approaching. We are grateful for their hard work in difficult circumstances.

Watching vehicles navigate flooded streets was a great reminder of what to do — and what not to do — when water is pouring over a road.

Emergency officials stress the importance of not driving on flooded streets. More deaths occur due to flooding than from any other storm-related hazard. Half of flood-related drownings occur when a car is driven into flood water.

It only takes 12 inches of fast-moving water to carry a small car away. Two feet of moving water can carry away most vehicles, even large ones.

Thankfully, there were no reports of motorists stranded in flood waters or cars being swept away. But we would all do well to remember the advice of “turn around, don’t drown.”