Emergency Management

Posted on: October 2, 2015

High tide, flooding are biggest weekend concerns

Oct. 2, 2015 - High tide about 1:15 p.m. Friday is expected to bring serious flooding, covering several roads in low-lying areas, including creeks and rivers. Early-morning high tide caused minor flooding to some roads about 12:45 a.m. Friday, Hampton police said.

The city remains under a coastal flood warning through Sunday, with flooding forecast during high tide cycles. Continued rain is expected throughout Friday, and strong winds will persist through the weekend. Residents are reminded that it is dangerous to drive through water, and motorists should turn around if water covers a road.

Because of the weather, Hampton City Schools have early dismissal Friday. Several weekend events, including the Crawlin' Crab races and downtown chili festival, have been canceled.

The National Weather Service predicts Hampton will see an additional 2-3 inches of rain throughout Friday, with winds of 25-30 mph. Waves along the bay could hit 5-8 feet.

Measurements of high tide on the James River at Sewell’s Point show Friday morning’s level at 5.26 feet, which is at the upper end of “moderate” levels. Friday afternoon’s level is predicted to be at 6.3 feet, or just below the level marked as “major” flooding. For comparison, Hurricane Floyd’s peak in 1999 was 5.97 feet.

While there is still some uncertainty regarding the path of Hurricane Joaquin, the National Hurricane Center forecast keeps Joaquin well offshore. Still, it is expected to continue to affect tide levels and coastal flooding.

Depending on its track, Joaquin could also cause more rain Saturday and Sunday and increased winds Sunday night into Monday.

Hampton police and fire departments are stationing boats and high water vehicles at key places in the city prone to flooding. Human Services has a shelter ready and a team on standby in case that is needed. Parks has a tree team ready. Public Works is continuing to clear problem drains and ditches. In the meantime, regular trash and recycling collection is on schedule, unless roads in an area become impassable.

Residents are encouraged to make appropriate plans for the weekend. Those living in low-lying areas, or residents with special needs, are urged to closely monitor weather conditions, and everyone should check and update their preparedness supplies. For more weather and flood-related information, go to www.hampton.gov/emergency.

Watch for updates on the news, on hampton.gov and on Hampton’s Facebook and Twitter pages. Residents can sign up to receive emergency alerts via text or email at www.hampton.gov by clicking on the “Notify Me” button along the left side.

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