County dodges most severe weather

Published 6:15 pm Tuesday, April 29, 2014

By Stephanie Nelson

For The Advance

Escambia County appeared to have dodged a bullet Tuesday as severe weather ripped through the south, causing at least 13 deaths have been reported in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee.

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Monday night, Gov. Robert Bentley declared as state of emergency, and three people in Alabama are confirmed dead after storms slammed the state. Power outages and flooding was reported in other areas.

Luckily, that was not the case in Escambia County, said county Emergency Management Agency Director David Adams.

“Just lots of wind, rain and lightning,” Adams said. “With the first round (Monday), there were no damages reported. That’s not to say we didn’t have a few minor things.”

Adams spent the bulk of Tuesday watching as another round of storms approached the area. He described the system as a “dynamic situation.”

“This storm is constantly changing,” he said. “Before lunch, it looked like we were going to miss the bulk of it, but 45 minutes later, the prediction put us right in the line of fire.”

As the afternoon progressed, Adams said he planned to monitor the reports and watch the county’s river ways.

“All of our rivers and creeks – they’re currently rising, and additional rainfall is coming,” he said. “As of Tuesday morning, things were not predicted to hit flood stage, but that can always change.

“When (the weather service) does those predictions, they take into consideration the rainfall that’s coming,” he said. “So looking at the numbers, I think we’ll be OK.”

Currently, Burnt Corn Creek is sitting at 7.3 feet, with a project of 9.9 feet by midday today. Action level is 11 feet, with flood stage at 16 feet.

Murder Creek is sitting at 13.47 feet and rising, Adams said. It is forecasted to crest at 17.9 feet on Thursday. Action stage is 17 feet with flood stage at 22 feet, he said.

“Conecuh River, it’s just over 16 feet,” he said. “It’s rising a lot slower. They project it at 22.6 feet about midday Friday. Flood stage is 27 feet. If all that holds true, like I said, we’ll be alright.”