A wet threat: Weekend rain causes flash floods, closes roads

Photo by Nate McCullough

Photo by Nate McCullough

COVINGTON -- Following Sunday's rain, the Yellow River was expected to crest at the Milstead Bridge in Rockdale County at 1 a.m. this morning at 14.5 feet, 2.5 feet above flood stage, according to the National Weather Service.

"We're looking at it cresting here (in Newton County) at 3 a.m.," said Jody Nolan, deputy director of Newton County Emergency/Risk Management. "There's a lot of runoff north of us and we've got a lot locally, and it may very well crest here higher than the predicted crest in Rockdale County."

Nolan said the dirt portion Sockwell Road between Mt. Tabor and Cook roads was already closed Monday due to flooding and he anticipated it would remain closed for two to three days. He said Sewell Road off U.S. Highway 278 and Sycamore Trail were closed, as well.

"Riverside Mobile Home Park in the RV area is already flooded and it will certainly get more water," Nolan said.

Flash flood in Rockdale

Rockdale County weathered this weekend's flash flood warnings with only a few neighborhoods notified of the need to prepare for possible evacuation.

A flash flood warning went into effect Sunday evening after heavy rains drenched much of north Georgia throughout the day.

The Rockdale County Sheriff's Office, which also serves as the county's Emergency Management Service, knocked on about 30 to 40 homes between 10 a.m. and noon Sunday on Hi-Roc Road and the Lake Capri community, said Rockdale County Sheriff Jeff Wigington.

Sheriff's deputies informed residents the Yellow River was expected to rise to levels where residents might experience flooding.

"We know from previous floods and high waters that we have certain areas that are more vulnerable than others," Wigington said. "It was more of a precaution than anything."

Five or six homes on Lakeshore Drive in the Sunrise community, also known as Lakeview Estates, were also advised to prepare to evacuate, according to Wigington. Sheriff's deputies offered residents lodging assistance from the American Red Cross, Wigington said.

"And they all declined (and said) that they would stay with friends and family," he said.

Staff Reporter Alena Parker contributed to this report.