2018 Flood | Tuesday, Feb. 27 Update

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By Jeff Moore

The Ohio River in Carroll County is down more than a foot-and-a-half since Monday, but 26 roads remain closed due to high water Tuesday afternoon.

At the daily meeting of county and city of Carrollton officials, Carroll County Emergency Management Director Ed Webb said reports show water levels had dropped 27 inches at Markland Dam from Monday to Tuesday. However, at a point he is observing in Prestonville, the level had only dropped 19 inches in that same period.

The National Weather Service website on Markland Dam shows it down to 54.6 feet as of 1:45 p.m. Tuesday, which is still 3.6 feet above flood stage. The river crested at 57.06 feet Monday at 2:45 a.m.

At this point, road safety is one of the key issues facing the community as many drivers are going around barriers and crossing through roads that are underwater. Officials stressed that drivers should not cross roads that are covered by water and should wait to use highways that were underwater until they can be assessed for damage.

Hwy. 467 is the only road that has reopened since Monday, Webb told the group that included Judge-Executive Bobby Lee Westrick, magistrates Floyd Bowling and Mark Bates, Carrollton Police Chief Mike Willhoite, city Councilman Doug Hill, Carroll County Schools Chief Operations Officer and Director of Pupil Personnel Mark Willhoite and others.

“You never know what is under that water,” Bowling said. The officials discussed how flood waters can wash out the dirt beneath the pavement, which could cause the road to collapse from the weight of a vehicle.

With only the one road opening Tuesday, the group agreed that Carroll County Schools should be closed again tomorrow.

COO/DPP Mark Willhoite agreed, saying the school district can’t take any chances with children’s safety when putting buses back on the road. “I can’t put buses on roads until after they are assessed.”

Shortly after Tuesday’s meeting, school officials agreed to call off school again on Wednesday, Willhoite said in a follow up call. He said they will reassess the situation on Wednesday at the next 1 p.m. meeting.

“This time tomorrow, we hope to be in a better place,” Willhoite said.

A hazardous road situation caused by flood waters may not be visible because of water above or on the sides of a highway.

Webb said even when water is off the road, a proper assessment of the condition requires it to be down around the road embankment. If water is still up on the sides, he said there is no way to check and ensure there is actually something “supporting the blacktop.”

In additional to the roads covered with water, there are concerns caused by slides on King’s Ridge Road and Hwy. 36.

Bowling said the ground supporting one lane of a part of King’s Ridge Road has washed out and Kentucky Transportation Cabinet officials told him they have placed a stop light there to allow a single lane of traffic flow.

With much of the support for the left lane gone, Bowling said officials are working to devise a way to quickly repair it so they can have both lanes back in service.

County officials and those from KYTC also are watching a slide area on Hwy. 36 near Sam Scott’s property. Photos at Tuesday’s meeting showed dirt and mud out several feet into the road on the embankment side. Officials are watching it and are concerned how the upcoming rain will affect it.

A slide on Hwy. 355 near Perry Park in Owen County has created problems for many who travel that road to Carrollton or use it to go to Frankfort. Westrick said KYTC officials have told him they hope to keep one lane open so vehicles can travel that road, but that they remain concerned about the effect of the Wednesday rains there as well.

The road closings as of Tuesday at 1 p.m. are:

• Notch Lick Road
• Second Street (Carrollton)
• Seminary Street 200 Block
• Sycamore Street 200 Block
• Hampton Lane
• Carlisle Street (Old Carlisle)
• Old Gilgal Road
• Sheehan Road
• Blue Lick Road
• Goose Creek Road
• Lock No 1 Road
• Mill Creek Road
• Hwy. 55
• Carlisle Road
• Mason Street 200 & 300 Blocks
• Clay Street 200 Block 
• Third Street 300 & 400 Blocks
• Hwy. 36 East (Sanders)
• Hwy. 36 West
• U.S. 42 West
• Hwy. 389
• Lewis Road
• Buffalo Creek Road
• Black Rock Road
• Jackson Road
• South Kendall Road

Webb said the shelter operated by the American Red Cross remains open at Relevant Church. On Tuesday, there were still four people making use of it. Anyone needing a place to stay can make use of the shelter 24/7.

Officials will meet again on Wednesday at 1 p.m. to update the status of the State of Emergency caused by the flooding along the Ohio and Kentucky rivers in Carroll County.