More rainfall expected in Pettis this week

A flash flood watch remains in effect from 7 p.m. Monday until Wednesday evening for portions of Kansas and Missouri.

The National Weather Service flash flood report advised that the expected 4 inches of rainfall — possibly higher in local areas — could affect rivers, creeks and streams across several counties, including Pettis.

The excessive rainfall may cause many roads and low-water crossings to become flooded and impassable. The first round of rainfall, 1 to 2 possible inches, is expected to start late Monday afternoon into the evening. The second round, another 1 to 2 possible inches, is expected Tuesday night into Wednesday.

Dave Clippert, director of the Sedalia-Pettis County Emergency Management Agency, said Pettis County could get 3.5 to 4 inches of rain between Monday and Thursday.

“If that could spread out over that time period, it won’t be too bad, but if we get some heavy pockets like last week, we get some flooding in these amounts like last week,” Clippert said. “We’re still very saturated. No matter how much water we get, the ground is not going to soak it in.”

Pettis County Presiding Commissioner David Dick said they are using normal precautions to prepare for flash flooding this week.

“We’re ready to see where we need to go if something happens to the roads and bridges, but no special preparations,” Dick said. “We’re just ready to respond. It’s kind of hard to predict where you’re going to be needed at.”

Dick said the Pettis County Commission is in the process of planning repairs on the Wimer Bridge in La Monte with the Missouri Department of Transportation. The Pettis County Commission made repairs to McGee Road and grated damaged places in other roads due to flooding and flash flooding earlier this summer.

“It’s a rainy time and these roads are soft,” Dick said. “Until it stops raining, we have to keep the roads as passable as we can, given the condition we’re in. Some of the more permanent repairs will take some time to complete because it’s so wet.”

Western Commissioner Jim Marcum said the Commission is prepared to respond to flash flooding this week.

“We’ve got graters and floaters and stuff to help clean the trash off the road, but when you get 5 inches of rain in a two- hour span, you don’t know what to prepare for,” Marcum said. “You can’t be preventive, but you can be reactive.”

Clippert advised anyone driving in the area that if they aren’t certain if the roads are passable, they should not attempt to pass through water on the roads.

“Turn around, don’t drown,” he said. “If you’re not absolutely positive you can get through that water, don’t drive into it. For some folks (last week), it came up on a flash. It was not slowly, but suddenly they’re in high water.

“When you’re in these flash flood watches, you’ve got to pay attention.”

Sedalia Democrat
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