HARLAN, Ky. (AP) — Heavy rains flooded areas and caused mudslides in parts of Appalachia, forcing dozens of people out of their homes and into shelters as the high water closed roads and schools.
Kentucky Emergency Management spokeswoman Monica L. French told news outlets that Harlan, Bell, Knox, Letcher and Floyd counties and the city of Pineville have declared states of emergencies due to flooding.
Harlan County Judge-Executive Dan Mosley says more than 100 people were evacuated and between 30 and 50 people spent the night at a shelter Saturday. Emergency Manager David McGill said about 5 inches (12.7 centimeters) of rain fell in the county.
The National Weather Service still had flood warnings posted Monday morning for a few areas in Kentucky and Tennessee.
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Heavy rains in southwest Virginia caused flooding, mudslides and a partial dam break Sunday. Although warnings in West Virginia had expired, areas in the southern part of the state were cleaning up from mudslides Sunday.
Areas of Middle Tennessee had high water over roads Sunday after more than 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) of rain fell, but no major flooding was reported.
Tennessee Valley Authority River Forecast Center manager James Everett said normal weekend rainfall is about 1 inch (2.5 centimeters), so the utility was spilling water at seven dams on the Tennessee River to prevent flooding.
Meanwhile, emergency crews in Kentucky rescued at least a half-dozen people from vehicles stuck in high water in Harlan County, Mosley said. In Perry County, emergency manager Jerry Stacy said firefighters rescued four people from a home threatened my high water. No injuries were reported.
In Letcher County, homeowner Sandra Slone said her family heard crackling early Sunday that turned out to be a mudslide.
“When we got up this morning the whole road was blocked because the mud was all the way across,” Slone said.