Category Archives: Flooding

Flood warning until 8:30 p.m. for Sedgwick County

Sustained heavy rain late Tuesday afternoon has prompted the National Weather Service to issue a flood warning for Sedgwick County until 8:30 p.m.

Up to an inch of rain has fallen in portions of the county, with another inch or two of rain possible from the slow-moving storms.

Street flooding is likely in low-lying and slow-draining areas, officials say.

Heavy rain to offer challenges for evening commute in Wichita

Heavy rain falling for much of the last hour is causing ponding on streets in the Wichita area, the National Weather Service cautioned.

That figures to make the evening commute trickier than normal. Drive carefully.

Flood watch for areas east of Wichita

The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for portions of the Wichita metropolitan area and southeast Kansas until 10 a.m. Thursday.

Butler and Cowley counties are included in the watch, but Sedgwick is not.

Allen, Chautauqua, Elk, Greenwood, Labette, Montgomery, Neosho, Wilson and Woodson counties are also in the watch area. Rounds of heavy rain are expected to bring 1 to 2 inches of rain to an area that received 1 to 3 inches on Tuesday night.

Low-land rural and street flooding is possible, and localized flash flooding can’t be ruled out.

Kansas National Guard units assisting with repairs following flash flood in Colorado

More than 75 Kansas National Guard soldiers and airmen are in Colorado repairing roads washed away during a flash flood last month.

U.S. Highway 36 was destroyed by flooding between Lyons and Estes Park on Sept. 12, cutting off residents in the smaller, rural communities who live along the 25-mile stretch of highway.

Army and Air National Guard units from Kansas arrived in Colorado last week, according to the Kansas Adjutant General’s office. The units include the 891st Engineer Battalion from Iola, the 226th Engineer Company in Augusta, the242nd Engineer Company from Coffeyville, the 772nd Engineer Company in Pittsburg, the 190th Civil Engineering Squadron from Topeka and the 184th Intelligence Wing Civil Engineering Squadron from Wichita. The units have civil engineers and heavy equipment operators.

The Kansas contingent is working with Guard units from Colorado, Montana and Utah, a statement from the adjutant general’s office said. The 175 Guardsmen are working 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset, to repair the highway.

The work includes building the road, removing debris – including cars, trees and boulders – filling land areas washed away by the water and installing culverts. Since operations began in September, the National Guard units have worked 7,150 man hours, placed 320 feet of culvert, and hauled 10,980 cubic yards of fill material. That’s enough dirt to fill more than 92,403 standard bath tubs.

The Kansas National Guard contingent is scheduled to return home in early November.

Governor declares state disaster for flooding from series of recent storms

Gov. Sam Brownback has issued a State of Disaster Emergency declaration for 62 counties affected by the recent severe storms, flooding and flash floods.

“These floods have damaged roads, bridges and other vital infrastructure across most of the state,” Brownback said in a prepared statement. “These need to be repaired as quickly as possible so everyone can get back to business as usual.”

One death is attributed to the flooding that was spawned by the strong storms that began raking the state on July 22. Steven Burrow, 14, drowned on Aug. 9 while swimming in the Wichita-Valley Center Floodway, known locally as the Big Ditch.

Named in the declaration are Allen, Anderson, Barber, Barton, Bourbon, Butler, Chase, Chautauqua, Cherokee, Clark, Clay, Cloud, Coffey, Comanche, Cowley, Crawford, Dickinson, Edwards, Elk, Ellsworth, Finney, Ford, Geary, Gray, Greenwood, Hamilton, Harper, Harvey, Haskell, Hodgeman, Kearney, Kingman, Kiowa, Labette, Lane, Linn, Lyon, Marion, McPherson, Meade, Montgomery, Morris, Neosho, Ness, Ottawa, Pawnee, Pratt, Reno, Republic, Rice, Rush, Russell, Saline, Scott, Sedgwick, Seward, Stafford, Stanton, Sumner, Wichita, Wilson, and Woodson counties.

The governor’s declaration activates the disaster response and recovery portions of the Kansas Response Plan, authorizing state resources and funds to expedite emergency assistance statewide.

The aid will assist local governments in repairing damaged infrastructure such as roads and bridges, said Sharon Watson, a spokeswoman for the Kansas Division of Emergency Management.

Four days of rain adds up to this

Here’s a rainfall map covering the last four days in central and southern Kansas, courtesy of the National Weather Service. It’s easy to see why Cow Creek, the Arkansas and Little Arkansas are all flooding to some degree. Rivers in southeast Kansas are also flooding threats.

And more rain is coming.

7 inches of rain in Reno County highlight a rainy night in region

This map showing rainfall as of 7 a.m. Sunday reflects why Reno and Rice counties are battling flooding issues today.

That’s a large area of 6 inches or more of rain in Rice and Reno counties, with 7 inches reported in Nickerson.

Water was also reported over roads in Park City and northern Butler County as runoff continues to feed into swollen creeks and rivers.

Wichita had recorded 3.4 inches in the 27-hour period ending at 10 a.m. Sunday. That hoisted rainfall for the month to 6.73 inches, more than 6 inches above normal for the month.

Flash flood warning issued for Wichita area in wake of heavy rains

The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning until 9:30 a.m. for Sedgwick County in the wake of heavy rain over the past few hours in the metropolitan area.

Numerous reports of vehicles stalling in street flooding have occurred during the morning commute, according to a Sedgwick County 911 supervisor.

“There’s a bunch of them,” the supervisor said. “They’re everywhere.”

West Wichita seemed particularly hard hit, with stalled vehicles reported at Harry and Meridian, the 3100 block of West 13th, the 1800 block of South Meridian and the intersection of 13th and Meridian. No injuries have been reported.

More than two inches of rain fell in west Wichita in about a two-hour span, said Jerilyn Billings, a meteorologist with the weather service. More than two inches was also reported in northeast Wichita near Jabara Airport.

Offcially, 1.43 inches had fallen at the recording station near Mid-Continent Airport since midnight, Billings said.

Rain should taper off later in the morning, but severe weather remains a threat for the Wichita area as well as eastern Kansas later today. Strong thunderstorms packing baseball-sized hail and winds of more than 70 miles an hour are possible, Billings said. A long-track tornado or two can’t be ruled out south of a line from Hutchinson to Cottonwood Falls.

“It’ll be interesting to see how this impacts today’s chances later,” Billings said of the morning thunderstorms. “What’s happening now does play a factor in it.

“It depends on how the atmosphere recovers.”

The Storm Prediction Center has posted a 10 percent chance of tornadoes from the Flint Hills east of the Kansas Turnpike south to near the Oklahoma-Texas border. The western edge of that zone skirts the border of Sedgwick and Butler counties. Wichita is included in a 5 percent zone for tornadoes.

Flash flood watch for border counties until Tuesday morning

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch until Tuesday morning for eight counties along the Oklahoma border, including Sumner and Cowley.

More than six inches of rain has fallen in far southern and southeast Kansas over the past two nights, the agency reports, and with more rain in the forecast flooding is a concern.

Other counties in the watch include Elk, Wilson, Neosho, Chautauqua, Montgomery and Labette.

Flood warning issued for parts of Barber and Comanche counties

The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning for small streams and urban areas of northwestern Barber and northeastern Comanche counties until 1:30 p.m.

Radar indicates as much as five inches of rain had fallen near Sun City in Barber County. Flooding of streets and roads in and near Sun City and Lake City is likely, the agency reported.