Rains cause flash flooding woes in Miss. Delta

Published 4:40 pm Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Tuesday morning classes were called off at Mississippi Valley State University and water crept into several homes in Itta Bena on Tuesday after heavy rains soaked the area.

Other areas across the northern half of the state also received a heavy soaking as the system of storms moved slowly eastward.

“We had one section of town, the Morgan Lane area, where the entire street flooded out,” said Itta Bena Mayor Thelma Collins. “One family woke up this morning and went to the kitchen only to discover they were wading in water.”

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Collins, whose town has about 2,200 residents, said storms rocked the area throughout the night and she understood about 6 inches of rain had fallen during the period.

“We had several houses that got water,” she said. “At least now it has stopped raining and conditions are improving. I’m really surprised the rain didn’t soak in because it has been so dry here.”

Rain was also reported or anticipated in other parts of Mississippi that are suffering from a drought.

At Mississippi Valley State, storms sent water over some streets and into parking areas, especially on the east side of the triangular-shaped campus.

Debbie Montgomery, spokeswoman at the school of about 3,000 students, said classes were called off until Tuesday afternoon, primarily because of the street flooding and because electricity was out from about 5 a.m. until 8:30 a.m.

Montgomery said strong winds accompanying the storms sent water around entrances and into some buildings, soaking carpets and the flooding had also caused drains in some building bathrooms to overflow, creating additional problems.

She said conditions were improving by late morning Tuesday.