McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

April 4, 2013

Flooded county roads re-opened

By MJ Brickey
Staff Writer

McALESTER — Closed roadways have opened after being flooded following significant rainfall.

Parts of State Highway 31 had been flooded during the significant rainfall, according to McAlester/Pittsburg County Emergency management director Trent Myers.

And, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation reported that State Highway 63 from Haileyville west to Bache Road was flooded as well but is now open.

There are many places on State Highway 31 that are prone to flooding, Myers said.

The flooding started covering State Highway 31 on Tuesday and was reported to be receded at approximately 7:45 a.m. this morning.

Myers said thankfully no one was stranded or required emergency rescue.

There have not been any drownings in the area that he can recall, but there have been several cases over the years where people had to be rescued from their vehicles in rushing waters.

Myers said currently ODOT put up blockades to block drivers from crossing flood waters and there are “Turn around don’t drown” signs posted in the area to remind people not to cross water covering roadways.

“It only takes 6 inches of water with a fast current to take your vehicle off the road,” Myers said. “You just shouldn’t cross water covering a road it is not worth the risk.”

“There is an alternative route to State Highway 31,” he said. “Go west on U.S. Highway 270.”

He said by driving westbound on U.S. Highway 270, the same destinations can be reached more safely.

Contact MJ Brickey by email at mjbrickey@journalist.com.

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