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Governor Beshear declares State of Emergency after heavy rainfall across the commonwealth

A total of 13 counties and cities have declared states of emergency
Published: Mar. 1, 2021 at 12:11 PM EST
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WYMT) - Governor Andy Beshear announced a state of emergency after much of the commonwealth was flooded due to severe rainfall.

The Kentucky Division of Emergency Management (KYEM) State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) is activated and monitoring reports from county emergency services agencies.

Gov. Beshear announced that the state of emergency will help support cities and counties that were severely affected by the rainfall, “We are acting swiftly to ensure the safety and security of Kentucky families and to get the needed help to our communities,” said Beshear.

This morning, a total of 13 counties and cities have declared states of emergency, including Breathitt, Calloway, Casey, Elliott, Estill, Johnson, Knott, Magoffin, Owsley, Perry and Pike counties and the cities of Paintsville and Salyersville.

The Kentucky National Guard has been activated and is responding to assist with high water emergencies.

“The impact of extremely heavy rainfall and flash flooding across the commonwealth led to numerous emergency rescues and evacuations in counties from west to east,” said Michael Dossett, director of KYEM. “The Governor’s state of emergency activated the National Guard, and we have been coordinating requests for assistance from counties across the state.”

Some basic safety tips for flooding awareness:

  • Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters – TURN AROUND. DON’T DROWN!
  • Do not drive over bridges that are above fast-moving floodwaters. Floodwaters can scour foundation material from around the footings and make the bridge unstable.
  • Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and 1 foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground.
  • Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.

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