Update: Braggs, Oklahoma completely surrounded by water
The Associated Press05/25/19, 16:33
The Latest on major flooding Oklahoma and Arkansas from severe weather across the central U.S. (all times local):
Officials say a small town in eastern Oklahoma is completely surrounded by water and without power from major flooding on the Arkansas River.
Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management spokeswoman Keli Cain says about 260 residents live in Braggs and it is not clear how many people evacuated before the flooding began.
Cain says Muskogee County officials are urging voluntary evacuations of low-lying areas along the river, where water could be seen up to roofs. Wagoner County officials are also urging evacuations for areas along both the Arkansas and the rising Verdigris River.
Cain says water rescue teams are on their way to assist in Muskogee, Wagoner, Rogers and Nowata counties.
Across the state, 87 people have been injured in the flooding, which has not yet peaked in some areas.
Oklahoma officials are urging residents to prepare to evacuate some Tulsa neighborhoods that are near stressed, old levees along the Arkansas River.
City officials said Saturday that people living west of downtown should consider leaving for higher ground, even though the levees aren’t currently considered to be in danger of failing.
Mayor G.T. Bynum says the levees were built in the 1940s and haven’t had to hold back this much water since 1986. Officials also say the levees will need to hold back that amount of water until at least Wednesday, which is three days longer than they previously expected.
Officials say if an evacuation becomes necessary, it would need to happen quickly.
The Arkansas River in Tulsa was four feet above flood stage Friday.