Flooding Rains

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In the 24 hours from Saturday to Sunday night, we've officially had close to an inch of rainfall and perhaps more in some isolated areas.

The biggest impact has been in low-lying areas. While in most places, water hasn't been up on the roads, it's been close. Take for instance, the area along route 14 between Williamstown and Boaz. High water could also be seen while driving Interstate 77 near Mineral Wells.

And once again, a steady stream of rain is causing concerns on Route 7 South of Marietta, where a hillside has been the site of landslips in the past. Orange barrels surrounded the area that's been prone to giving way, but, for the time being, the southbound lanes remained open.

And the river stage at the Ohio and Muskingum rivers in Marietta remains below flood stage, but it isn't normal. Flood stage is at 35 feet, with the river at mid-day at the 27-foot level.

Flood warnings were in effect Sunday night for the Muskingum River at McConnelsville, and for the Hocking River in Athens.

With more rain on the way, the city of Marietta has issued a high water advisory.

The advisory is for this Tuesday, but the water is already rising. That's when the Ohio River is expected to crest at 35 feet. That's one foot about the 34 feet flood level. And the water is also causing one school system to be a little cautious.

Morgan local schools were planning on running on a two-hour delay Monday.

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Reduce Flood and Water Damage in Your Home

  • Check your sump pump - Clean the sump pump and pit, and test the pump by pouring water into the pit. Consider having a spare submersible portable sump pump. Make sure the discharge hose delivers the water several feet away from the house to a well-drained area that slopes away from the house.

  • Move valuables to higher locations - Get items such as irreplaceable family photo albums, high school yearbooks, personal videotapes, tax records, insurance policies and household inventories off the bottom shelves in the lower level of your home.

  • Plug basement floor drains with removable grids - A flexible rubber ball about 1¼ times the inside diameter of the pipe can be wedged into the drain to create a tight seal. The pressure might be quite high so brace the ball securely with a 2X4 against the ceiling.

  • Cover basement floor drains with permanent grids - Place a partially inflated inner tube around the drain, and top it with a square or two of plywood (not particle board). The plywood must be larger across than the inner tube to cover it. Brace this in place just as with the ball on the drain. Be prepared for some seepage.

  • Reduce flooding from other drains - Unbolt toilets from the floor and plug the outlet pipe using the same procedure as for floor drains. Shower drains can be plugged this way too. Most washing machines and basement sinks have their drain connections about 3 feet above the floor so may not overflow if the water doesn't get that high. If necessary, these drains can be disconnected and capped or plugged with braced rubber balls.

  • Keep water out of window wells - Since windows can't withstand much pressure, build dams and contour the ground so water will naturally drain away from the house.

  • Prepare appliances for flooding - Shut off appliances at the fuse box or breaker panel. Put freezers, washer, dryers and other appliances up on wood or cement blocks to keep the motors above the water level. If high water is imminent and large appliances can't be moved, wrap them in polyethylene film, tying the film in place with cord or rope. The water will still get in, but most of the silt won't so cleanup will be easier.

  • Shut off electricity to areas of the home that might flood.

  • Move hazardous materials to higher locations - This includes paint, oil, cleaning supplies and other dangerous materials.

  • Plan an escape route - if certain roads or streets are known to flood easily. Where would you go if your home flooded a local shelter, a family member or friend's house?

  • Plan for pets - Pets aren't allowed in shelters due to health regulations. If left behind, stressed pets can damage your house, and their safety is at stake too.

  • Assemble supplies in case the electricity goes off - Gather water, food that requires no refrigeration or cooking, a non-electric can opener, a battery-powered radio and flashlight, extra batteries.

  • Assemble supplies for a possible evacuation - Gather water, nonperishable food, paper plates/cups and plastic utensils, extra clothing and shoes, blankets or sleeping bags, a first aid kit and prescription medications, cash and credit cards, important phone numbers, special items for babies and the elderly.

Source:www.ag.ndsu.nodak.edu (North Dakota State University Web site) contributed to this report.