State of Emergency declared for 'life-threatening' flash flooding in Haywood County

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— A State of Emergency has been declared for Haywood County following busy day of heavy rains and flash flooding.

A Flash Flood Warning for Henderson, Jackson, Transylvania, Macon and part of Haywood counties is extended until 11 p.m. A Flood Warning is in effect until 8 a.m. Friday, May 27.

Additional bands of heavy and widespread rains are expected. It is anticipated that this additional rain will cause more flooding. Please consider making plans now for your safety.

River levels in the Cruso and Lake Logan areas have risen to the Monitor Flooding stage and emergency responders are closely monitoring the river.

The Haywood County Emergency Operation Center has also been activated and additional resources have been requested in the event of significant flooding.

These dangerous storms are in an area devastated by floods in 2021.

Meteorologist Jason Boyer says the Little East Fork and West Fork of the Pigeon River is experiencing flooding. Emergency management reports water is now out of bank along the Little East Fork.

Rainfall of more than five inches in similar storms has been associated with an increased risk of landslides and rockslides. If you live on a mountainside or in a cove at the base of a mountain, especially near a stream, be ready to leave in advance of the storm or as quickly as possible should rising water, moving earth, or rocks threaten. Consider postponing travel along mountain roads during periods of heavy rainfall.

This is a dangerous and life-threatening situation. Officials ask that residents not travel unless fleeing an area subject to flooding.

Widespread showers and thunderstorms will bring occasional heavy downpours to the mountains Thursday night. Some of the thunderstorms may become strong to severe with damaging wind gusts and frequent lightning the main threats. Strong gusty winds can be expected across the ridgetops through tonight as a cold front moves through.

Earlier in the day, Haywood County Schools dismissed Thursday at 2:45 pm because of flooding that “developed rapidly and earlier than predicted in some areas of the county.”

Just after 3 p.m. Thursday, Canton May Zeb Smathers took to Twitter to give an update,

As the rain continues to fall, Canton and Haywood County emergency management teams are carefully monitoring the Pigeon River. Some isolated flooding has occurred, but at this time, nothing indicates a large event. Please pay attention to local news and weather reports.

The Haywood County Sheriff’s Office has listed the following road closures due to flooding / unsafe conditions.

Blue Ridge Parkway at 215 Crawford Creek Road Inman Branch Road The intersection of Sonoma and Pisgah Mundy Field Lenoir Road 110 Campground