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Floods lead to evacuations in Oklahoma and Arkansas

On Saturday, officials warned some residents of Tulsa to prepare for a rise as the old dams holding back the swollen Arkansas River are stressed and more rain is expected for the flooded region. [19659004] The river was four feet above the tide on Friday and was already causing floods in parts of Oklahoma's second-largest city, including South Tulsa, where the murky brown waters had flooded low-lying neighborhoods and up to the River Spirit Hotel and crawled up Casino, which closed on the weekend.

City officials told a press conference on Saturday that people living west of the city center should consider moving to a higher area, even though the levees are not currently considered as failures. Should an evacuation be necessary, this must be done quickly.

Mayor G.T. Bynum said the dikes were built in the 1940s and have not had to hold back so much water since 1986. The officials also said they anticipate a withdrawal of the river in Tulsa at the earliest on Wednesday and postponed their original estimate by three days.

"The risk of you staying there is very high," Bynum said. "That's an unnecessary risk."

About 89 kilometers southeast of Tulsa, the small town of Braggs was completely surrounded by water and without electricity, according to the spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management, Keli Cain.

Cain It is unclear how many of the city's approximately 260 residents were evacuated before the flood, but water rescue teams have been deployed to help Muskogee, Wagoner, Rogers, and Nowata, as well as other areas of the county.

Officials in Muskogee and Wagoner counties demanded voluntary evacuations of low-lying areas along the Arkansas River, where water could be seen up to the rooftops, as well as along the rising Verdigris River.

Cain said nationwide that 87 people had been injured in the floods. which has not yet reached its peak.

Storms have plagued the central plains and Midwest all spring, flooding the ground and leaving the rain only on overcrowded waterways. The recent tsunami and flooding in the region have been accused of at least nine deaths.

In northwest Arkansas, between 100 and 200 residents had their homes evacuated in the state's second largest city, Fort Smith, about 160 kilometers southeast of Tulsa. Karen Santos, a spokeswoman for the city of around 80,000, said at least one house on the river was completely submerged.

Laurie Driver, a spokeswoman for the Army Corps of Engineers, said the increasing release of floods from upstream dams "If you're in an area you've never been to before, you're not sure the dykes are moving. " to be hurt or not, "said Driver, though she added that most were in" good shape. "

The National Weather Service updated its prediction of flood peaks and now expects the river to be 41 feet high (12 meters) near Fort Smith late Tuesday night, this level would be 3 feet (0.91 meters) higher than its previous record set in 1945. This would make "almost catastrophic flooding" in Fort Smiths deep

Arkansas Gov.Asa Hutchinson declared a state of emergency on Friday night to free state agencies that are doing everything they can to help flooded areas.

According to the latest forecasts, in the coming week further storms are possible in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

] The authorities have ordered the immediate evacuation of the 150 inhabitants of the small town of Fall River in Kansa s, reported the Wichita Eagle. Increasing water releases from a dam north of the city, about 121 kilometers east of Wichita, threaten to flood the city. Already, buildings could be seen below their roofs downstream of the reservoir.

Officials said on Saturday in Indiana that the water level on a rain-swollen stream in the north of the state where a 4-year-old lived had dropped slightly. Boy was swept away Thursday. The boy, Owen Jones, was not found, although crews were looking for him on Deer Creek in Delphi.

Meanwhile, weak to moderate tornadoes landed in Iowa and Kansas on Friday. The Iowa killed some motorhomes and damaged roofs, trees and outbuildings in and around Frytown, south of Iowa City, but hurt no one, reported the television station KCRG by Cedar Rapids. The meteorological service said it was an EF-1 tornado with wind speeds of 110 miles per hour.

The tornado also disrupted the graduation ceremony of Iowa City's West High School on Friday night, forcing students, their families, and co-workers to seek shelter in the Carver-Hawkeye arena as a tornado warning.

In Kansas, an EF-0 Twister damaged trees near Douglass in the southeast of the state, according to KWCH. Nobody was injured.

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