Rising river levels, flood concerns in Montgomery Co. - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Rising river levels, flood concerns in Montgomery Co.

MONTGOMERY CO., GA (WTOC) -

Some of our local rivers could flood their banks Monday and threaten homes along the way.

Emergency crews in Montgomery County opened a shelter Monday afternoon for people forced to evacuate.

The waters of the Oconee and Ocmulgee rose through the day. Some spots on Dead River Road already had water rushing over them. Folks who live along Dead River Road and other spots in the river basin say they dread seeing storm reports upstream because it means water will head this way soon.

One homeowner says he has issue with the way they wait to open flood gates on the lakes and dams upstream when it causes problems here.

"If they'd just open the gates sooner and let water off gradually it would be better than waiting and letting it all at once,” said Joseph Dekle, resident.

The flood forecast had experienced part-time residents like Dick Whitley coming here to check their property and secure whatever they didn't want to lose this time or have lost in the past.

“Had water up in my lawnmower, water under my house. It knocked my water heater loose,” said Dick Whitley, owner.

Joseph Delk still remembers the flooding they saw back in 1999 when I needed a boat to get here.

“It was in the house. It was in the kitchen,” said Delk.

Montgomery County ordered folks to evacuate from Dead River and other roads, even those on higher spots where roads will flood before homes.

“That creates a trap where the house may be on high ground but the road is cut off on each end,” said Donny Daniels, Montgomery County EMA.

Delk doesn't share the worry and says he's survived worse.

Dal: “What are you going to do tonight, ride it out?”

“Yes, ride it out just like we've done before,” said Delk.

Daniels has stern advice for those who try to tough it out.

“Be prepared. But if you have to get out, don't wait until the last minute,” said Daniels.

Daniels warns people not to let our sunny skies fool them. This flood is coming from rough weather in other parts of the state a few days ago.

The Georgia Department of Transportation is closely monitoring the U.S. Highway 280 bridge, between Mount Vernon and Glenwood. As of now, the bridge has not been closed, but workers are keeping a close eye on it. 

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