Logan County was not spared from the high water and flooding that impacted the region as a result of near-constant rainfall all day Sunday and into Monday morning.
The flooding was, perhaps, the worst the county has seen since March 15, 2012, as almost no part of the county was spared from water closing roadways from Harts, Trace Fork, Crawley Creek, communities along W.Va. 44 and beyond. Even the W.Va. 10 entrance to Chief Logan State Park was closed Monday morning due to water in the road.
Some areas, such as Mount Gay and Cherry Tree, were completely underwater for a time, with water reaching floor levels inside businesses such as Stereo Video, Jersey’s III and Dairy Delight. For those communities, which are no stranger to flooding, it was likely the highest water since June 12, 2010, which predates the 2014 Island Creek Flood Protection Project, a flood mitigation effort that widened the Guyandotte River near Black Bottom.
“We’ve dodged a lot of bullets in recent years,” said Bill Weese, deputy director of the Logan County Office of Emergency Management. “There’s been a lot of flooding around us, but it was probably 2012 on a larger scale. I mean, we have them yearly on Trace Fork, Garretts Fork, but you know, with the mitigation project that the county commission’s done, you’ve not seen any flooding in Mount Gay like you did this time. We lived them it seemed like every year there for a long time, but here in the last few years, we’ve really not had large magnitude floods — localized stuff, but nothing, you know, with any damage to any homes or anything.”
Around the city of Logan, the Guyandotte’s water levels were high enough to touch yards and porches in parts of Slabtown and easily submerge the Shawnee Island park. Weese said the Guyandotte crested around 7 a.m. Monday morning, reaching 23.58 feet, which is slightly over the flood stage level of 23 feet.
By 7 p.m. Monday evening, water levels in the river had receded to about 15 feet, according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
A few underpasses around the county were also blocked by water, including the ones at Peach Creek/Crooked Creek and at Stollings, the latter of which had a car visibly submerged. Emergency crews performed only three vehicle rescues and no home rescues.
“That was mostly from people driving through water they shouldn’t be driving through,” Weese said, “but as far as houses being evacuated, we were lucky enough that we didn’t have to get anybody out of any homes.”
Weese noted that there were approximately 17 road closures due to high water and three due to mudslides. There were also some minor power outages, mostly confined to the Chapmanville area and northbound on U.S. 119 to Anchor Road in Boone County.
The Logan County Office of Emergency Management is asking residents for help in gathering flood damage information. Teams are doing assessments of damages to windshields, homes or other structures due to blockages of water, mudslides or other debris.
Weese said the assessments can help put a dollar figure to the damage, which can lead to a disaster declaration from FEMA to bring in state and federal dollars for help. He notes that the home damage is specific to actual living areas.
“When I say the living area of your home, if you’ve got a basement that got flooding and it’s just a basement and you don’t have bedrooms or something like that down there, that’s not included in the FEMA report,” Weese said, “but the actual, in your living quarters, if any water got in or any kind of damage from any mudslides or anything to that nature, we need to know about it.”
A link to a form to submit photos of damage can be found on the Logan County Office of Emergency Management’s Facebook page. Photos can be uploaded from Google Drive or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. The LCOEM can also be contacted by calling the Storm Damage Hotline at 304-792-2116. If there is no answer, callers are asked to leave a message.
To see a gallery of photos showing flooding around the Logan area Monday morning, visit www.LoganBanner.com.