Region braces for possible flooding | News, Sports, Jobs
First responders in Frankstown Township and other flood-prone areas are bracing for the 3-6 inch rain forecast and subsequent flooding that former Hurricane Ida is expected to bring today.
The Geeseytown Community Fire Company shared a Facebook post from Chief Dennis Estep on Tuesday that urged residents to exercise extreme caution in the coming days.
“For now, the National Weather Service is predicting a peak on gauge at Williamsburg at 14.7 feet on Thursday,” Estep said in his post. “This means that most of the roads around the river will be impassable in places. Some areas of the township will be cut off from vehicle travel. “
He also said that if there is a closed road sign posted, there is water on the road at some point beyond the sign.
Estep listed the roads that could be underwater before or at the crest of the water. Routes on his list include Reservoir Road a quarter mile past Frankstown Bridge to near Frankstown Elementary School, lower half of Juniata Valley Road to Canoe Creek area, Locke Mountain Road near East Loop , most of East Loop, Route 22 past Flowing Springs to Route 866, River Road and East View Road.
“If it rains a lot, several other roads may also be below”, said Estep. “Be careful, don’t go around closed road signs.”
Although Ida was downgraded to a tropical storm, it “Will continue to bring life-threatening flash, urban and river flooding to mid-Atlantic communities over the coming days,” according to a press release from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Several water rescue teams are on standby, according to Mark Taylor, director of emergency services for Blair County.
“Hope people are smart and don’t drive in” Taylor said.
Another hazard to watch out for are downed trees and wires, according to a press release from Blair County Emergency Management.
“In a severe storm or when the ground is saturated, trees tend to fall, often taking utility lines with them. “ the statement said. “Treat all broken power lines like power lines or live power lines. “
An isolated destructive wind gust or brief tornado is possible in south-central and southeastern Pennsylvania, primarily south and east of the I-81 / I-78 corridor, the statement said.
Taylor said he was urging everyone to heed evacuation orders.
For the most up-to-date information, residents can search for public service announcements posted on the Blair County website – blairco.org – and on the social media pages of local emergency services.
“If this is a major event, we will use our reverse 911 system to alert people”, Taylor said.
“FEMA Region 3 is ready to assist our state and district partners,” said Regional Administrator MaryAnn Tierney. “We are working hand in hand with state and district response officials to position staff and resources.”
FEMA Region 3 includes West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Northern Delaware, Northwestern Virginia, and Washington, DC
In addition to the local response, the Pennsylvania National Guard announced that approximately 120 members have been placed on active duty in the state and are on standby.
“As members of the National Guard, we serve in our communities and are no strangers to responding to extreme weather events,” said Pennsylvania Adjutant General Major General Mark Schindler.
Mirror Staff Editor Rachel Foor is at 814-946-7458.