Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Agencies Release Information Regarding Flooding and Shelters

As water levels continue to rise and flooding concerns grow area agencies are meeting to plan and prepare. 

Shelter and food is available to those evacuating. The Cherokee Nation has compiled and released the following list of locations.

- The Vian Peace Center, 208 W. Schley St., is available for food and water
Contact information for Vian assistance: 479-739-5351

- Old high school gymnasium is available as a shelter.
Contact information for Gore shelters/assistance: 918-489-5587

- First Baptist Church, 810 2nd Ave., is available as a shelter
- Church on the Word, 1511 North Highway 64 and Culwell, is open as a shelter
- First Assembly of God, 206 3rd St., is open as a shelter
Contact information for Warner shelters/assistance: 918-869-6708

- Warrior Gymnasium at Bacone College has cots, water, showers and restrooms

A group of agencies met Wednesday morning and released the following statement with important information for residents affected by flooding.

On 05/22/2019 at 1000 hours the Muskogee County Emergency Management, City of Muskogee Emergency Management, PD, FD, Muskogee County EMS, City Officials, OHP, OG&E, ODOT, Muskogee County Sheriff, and numerous other representatives from multiple agencies in the county of Muskogee met at the Emergency Operations Center in Muskogee to plan for the rising river levels and flooding that is taking place in Muskogee County.

The flood stage for the Arkansas River near Muskogee is 28 feet. As of 8:00 a.m. this morning the river level was at 35.73 feet and expect to rise to 41.8 feet as early as 1:00pm this afternoon. 41 feet of water is equal to 512.38 feet of elevation. It is estimated that it will stay at this level until Saturday and slowly start decreasing after that. This is 2.2 feet higher than the historic flood of 1986.

We are recommending the immediate evacuation of residents of Riverside Trailer Park in Muskogee, the town of Webbers Falls, and any other low-lying areas along the Arkansas river. Additional flooding for the City of Muskogee is projected to be along Hancock Road near the Muskogee Sewer Plant.

The elevation of HWY 62 near the Fort Gibson Casino on the east end is 510 feet. Projections show that the water level will be at or above the HWY at this location as soon as 1:00 p.m. today.

Power service is not expected to be interrupted. The lowest level of a building at OG&E is 520 feet and the river level is not expected to reach this level. OG&E is not producing power at this time and have been bringing in power from the grid. This is not due to the flooding and has been occurring due to recent upgrades at the plant.

The current shelter location for displaced residents in Muskogee and Fort Gibson is at Warrior Gym at Bacone College located at 2299 Old Bacone Road in Muskogee. The American Red Cross is flying in teams to assist with the shelter. We have a back-up shelter in Muskogee if this shelter meets capacity.

The current shelter for residents in Webbers Falls and surrounding areas is at Church on the Word located at 1511 Culwell Drive in Warner.

Muskogee County EMS is fully staffed and have pre-positioned trucks in preparation for the rising river levels. We also have rescue boats and trained personnel to reach people who may be cut-off due to water levels. Air-Evac is available and able to serve our jurisdiction if needed.

The Muskogee Police Department will answer calls as they come into dispatch throughout the event. In addition, should the Muskogee Sheriff’s Office become overwhelmed with calls for service the Muskogee Police Department will assist as needed. Until further notice the Muskogee Sheriff’s Office is on a Limited Response Protocol which means they will only respond to emergency calls for service.

The Muskogee County Emergency Management and the City of Muskogee Emergency Management have entered into Unified Command and are monitoring this situation along with representatives from multiple different departments and agencies.

We ask that notifications of road closures be posted on our Facebook page. This allows the comment to be recorded and helps with manpower issues with having to answer the phones.

We are closely monitoring this situation and will provide updates throughout this situation. Follow us on the Muskogee County Emergency Management Facebook page

Once again, the Muskogee County Emergency Management and the City of Muskogee Emergency Management have entered into Unified Command and are working together throughout this situation.
In anticipation of flooding and flooded roads Muskogee Schools is allowing students to be picked up early with no penalty for absence. School end times will remain the same for students not picked up. Bus routes will be ran as normal.

Please continue to use caution as water levels rise and as always remember to not drive over a flooded roadway. 

KXMX News Staff

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