White River Threatening Homes in Jackson County

APRIL 26, 2004 - Posted at 5:04 p.m. CDT

NEWPORT, AR - The rains have stopped for now, but some Region 8 residents are still keeping a watchful eye for flooding, especially in Jackson County.

As of this afternoon, the National Weather Service in Little Rock said the stage was at 28.1 feet at 1 p.m.  Flood stage is 26 feet, and the river is forecast to crest near 31 feet late tomorrow.  A river flood warning remains in effect for the White River, and the NWS says the highest crest since 1982 flooding appears likely.

Jackson County Emergency Services Director Don Ivie says the situation along the White in his county is perilous.  "Right now we're just watching and waiting to see what happens.  We want to make sure we don't have to close up seawalls or sandbag homes," said Ivie.  Still, Ivie issued this warning to homeowners, "If you live in an area with a body of water around you, watch out for your surroundings."  Ivie has been busy all day monitoring the river, and he expects to remain on watch tonight.

Meanwhile, several roadways in Jackson and Independence counties are under water.  Highways 224 and 226 north of Tuckerman are closed, as is Highway 27 in the Elgin area, and Highway 14 west from Newport to Oil Trough.

(News Assignment Manager Randy Myers contributed to this report.)