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“I’ve never seen this happen over here:” Breathitt County residents see impact of flooding

As we continue to see flooding impact people across the region cars are underwater and roads impassable in Breathitt County.
Published: Mar. 1, 2021 at 3:41 PM EST
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BREATHITT COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - As we continue to see flooding impact people across the region cars are underwater and roads impassable in Breathitt County.

Donnie Benton has lived in the area for 20 years and says he has never experienced anything like this.

“I watched it coming up and it got about 3 feet from the bottom of the floor and I said to heck with this I’m getting out of here while I can,” said Benton. “I’ve never seen this happen over here. The farthest I’ve seen the water come up as on the back street that’s it and that’s the furthest I’ve seen. I ain’t never seen it up in all these yards or around the houses like that. "

His story is similar to many across the region as rising waters overnight Sunday shocked many as they awoke Monday morning like Charles Shaw who also lives in the area.

“They lost just about everything that they had. It’s just so sad and everything. People are dealing with the Covid virus and the snow and now it’s just flooding and now it’s taking homes and people just don’t know what to do anymore. They don’t know the next steps,” said Shaw.

Laura Thomas, City of Jackson Mayor, says crews across the area continue to work to ensure people’s safety but her plea is to call for help if you find yourself in a similar situation.

Rescue crews had to save people near Riverside Christian School. School administrators say three homes, several apartments, cars, and the first floor of the school were all destroyed.

“Don’t wait until the last minute like if you totally wait to call for help then it could be the emergency rescue people can’t even get to you,” said Thomas. “The police department, fire department, our water and sewer, and parks and street crews and everyone is working just as hard as they can and we can’t control the river. I wish it would stop rising.”

As people like Benton continue to wait until the water goes down to get a look at the damage left behind.

“I’m gonna wait until the water goes back down to see what it destroyed in the house and see what I can do about fixing it back up. That’s all I can do,” said Benton.

The City of Jackson currently has a boil water advisory in effect.

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