Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Governor Urges North Carolinians to Remain Vigilant as More Heavy Rains from Alberto Hit State

May 29, 2018

Though Subtropical Depression Alberto is weakening, the threat of additional rain means North Carolinians need to remain vigilant and watch for area flooding in low-lying areas and landslides in the mountains, Governor Roy Cooper said today.

Flash Flood Watches remain in effect for portions of the state along and west of the I-77 corridor and west, as well as far southeastern North Carolina. An additional one-half to two inches of rain is expected across the state today with ranges of two to four inches and locally higher amounts possible in the southern mountains through Thursday evening. Rainfall could cause additional landslides across western NC where some of the greatest accumulations are expected.

"We may not have seen the worst of Alberto yet in some parts of North Carolina," Gov. Cooper said. "More rain today on top of up to a foot of rain in some areas over the past two weeks could lead to more floods, downed trees and mudslides, and people need to continue to take this storm seriously.”

The storm has already caused two deaths in North Carolina, when a vehicle carrying two journalists covering the storm was hit by a falling tree in Polk County on Monday.

Governor Cooper plans to tour storm damage in western North Carolina later this week.

State and local officials are coordinating to respond to any resource needs while keeping a close watch on minor flooding expected today along the Roanoke River near Roanoke Rapids and along the French Broad River at Fletcher and Blantyre later this week. Flooding at Blantyre could approach moderate flooding on Thursday. Officials continue to monitor the French Broad River at Asheville, the Neuse River at Smithfield, the Roanoke River at Williamston, and the Northeast Cape Fear River near Burgaw for potential flooding concerns.

The State Highway Patrol urges drivers to stay away from flooded roads and to be especially cautious when driving in the mountains where the potential for landslides and road washouts continues.

State Transportation officials said a portion of U.S. 176 in Polk County where the fatality occurred will remain closed between Harmon Field Road in Tryon and Ozone Road in Saluda. NCDOT officials are assessing conditions to determine when the road will reopen. In Avery County, U.S. 221 remains closed while repairs are being made from damage caused by heavy rains earlier this month.  

Several secondary roads are closed in Transylvania County due to flooding including Wilson Road, Davidson River Road, Island Ford Road and Cascade Lake Road; each is expected to reopen later this week.

Some roads in eastern North Carolina are closed as well. In Sampson County, West Mount Gilead Road south of Clinton is closed to due flooding, and Kornegay Town Road, north of Clinton, is closed in both directions due to washed out shoulders. Transportation crews remain on standby to begin repairs as soon as the rain stops.

Information is also available at ReadyNC.gov and at the ReadyNC mobile app which can be downloaded for free.