Archive for Thursday, September 11, 2008

Douglas County included in flood watch

September 11, 2008

Douglas County is included in a flood watch that the National Weather Service issued Thursday morning.

The area watch begins at 1 a.m. Friday and is expected to expire at 7 a.m. Saturday.

Jennifer Schack, 6News chief meteorologist, said Lawrence will receive several inches of rain over the next two days. Rain may linger until early Sunday.

The heaviest rain may start late this afternoon and will also be heavy Saturday afternoon, Schack said.

The rain is coming from the southwest and is originating from the Pacific Ocean, she said.

Temperatures will be in the low to mid-70s the rest of the week and into the weekend.

Josh Boustead, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Topeka, said the weather service is predicting that moisture from Hurricane Ike likely won't make it into northeast Kansas. Current track models show the moisture affecting Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas, he said.

But parts of southeastern Kansas may be watching that rain, particularly if it has already flooded in that part of the state.

Emergency management directors in Kansas are keeping an eye on preparations for Ike to strike Texas and to help with potential flooding in Kansas, said Terry Smith, the director for Douglas County.

Douglas County's emergency management department is the program manager for the incident management team in northeast Kansas. Smith and others coordinate staff members to help in other parts of the state or other states during an emergency.

Two Lawrence residents, Bill Stark, a Lawrence-Douglas County Fire & Medical division chief, and Bill Brubaker, the northeast Kansas regional coordinator for the Department of Homeland Security, helped in Mississippi prior to Hurricane Gustav. They have already returned.

Other deployments either for flooding in the state or Hurricane Gustav in Texas could be coming.

"We've already started working with people, finding out who is available for deployment and putting them on standby," Smith said.

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