JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Several metro-area cities were affected by flash flooding Tuesday as heavy rains swept through central Mississippi.
City officials held a press conference Tuesday afternoon to discuss what’s being done to help.
Mayor Chokwe Lumumba said they are concerned about the potential for more rainfall in the coming days.
“The water we’ve seen over the last two days is far too much water for the city to handle at one time,” Lumumba said.
He warned against anyone getting trapped flood water. He said he’s personally witnessed people being trapped in flood water. He says no one should remove barricades or attempt to go into the flood water for any reason.
JATRAN services were suspended for the rest of Tuesday. Paratransit will be available for return only until 4 p.m.
City officials are monitoring the level of the Pearl River. The river is expected to crest at 32.5 feet Wednesday. Flood stage for the river is 28 feet.
Director of Public Works Bob Miller said 3-4 inches of rain have fallen and the city is dealing with sewer overflows that need repair.
“We’re not out of the woods yet,” Miller said.
Lumumba reminded the public that if you know someone who needs help and needs to be evacuated, you should not hesitate to call the city, or call 911 if it is an emergency.
Students and staff are inside Jim Hill high School, which is surrounded by flood water. School officials said they are safe inside, but the school will not be dismissed until the water recedes and it is safe to leave.
City crews are outside the school trying to drain the water on surrounding streets.
As a precaution, students and staff at Isable Elementary were taken to Blackburn Middle School.
A temporary lane closure has been set up for a short distance on lower Spillway Road, East bound into Rankin County said Reservoir Police Chief Perry Waggener.
Waggener said excessive rainfall has created road hazards capable of causing vehicle damage.
The City of Pearl is warning drivers not to drive around barricades. A woman was fortunate enough to escape unharmed after her vehicle got stuck when she attempted to do so.
Officials are asking motorists to stay off the roads, even if they do not appear to be flooded.
The City of Clinton said rain gauges have received over 4.9 inches of rain. Rainfall, coupled with the saturated ground and high creeks, caused flash flooding in several areas of the city.
Officials are advising motorists not to drive around the barricades, as it can cause your vehicle to stall and can cause a wake to damage adjacent property.
Clinton city officials anticipate for the water to recede quickly once the rain resides.
Drivers are instructed to avoid the following areas: Broadway at Hampstead Blvd; Post Road at Tanglewood; Bruenburg Parkway and Cowles Creek; and Northside Drive east over Bogue Chitto Creek at the four lane.