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County emergency officials prepare for flooding

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Posted at 10:42 PM, Feb 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-27 23:15:45-05

ESTILL COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — As certain parts of the state wait for expected rainfall, officials in flood-prone areas are keeping an eye on creeks and the Kentucky River.

“We're a river community. We love our river, but sometimes it does cause us problems,” said Estill County Emergency Management Director Ronnie Riddell.

Riddell says flooding isn't anything new in the area, so they're always prepared. This is especially true this weekend since he says the National Weather Service predicts the Kentucky River's water level will rise to a little over 30 feet in the county.

“Which is a pretty significant flood for us,” said Riddell. “We will have roads blocked off at that level.”

Riddell says it doesn't help that the water level is higher right now than it normally would be, due to last week's winter storm.

“We're starting three or four feet higher due to some of the runoff from last week's snow and ice and some rain in between,” he said.

Several other counties are keeping an eye on their bodies of water through the weekend, including those where Stoner Creek runs through, like Bourbon County. Bourbon County Emergency Management Director Lloyd Campbell says there is a gauge in the creek that allows officials to monitor the water level as it rises, so they can see when it reaches a flood stage.

As flooding impacts these areas through the weekend, emergency officials all have the same message - if you come across a flooded roadway, turn around and do not drive through high water.