Widespread Flooding in South Central Kansas, More Rain in Forecast

Several communities in the state of Kansas were grappling with flooded homes, buildings and streets after weekend storms dumped several inches of rain. Officials in Reno County said Monday that portions of their county got up to seven inches of rain over the weekend and that two extended care facilities had to be evacuated due to water being inside.

The Kansas Div. Of Emergency Management urged state residents Sunday to be very careful if planning to travel in central Kansas
and to listen to weather reports. The DEM also said that flash floods could occur very quickly during any significant rainfall which could affect highways, roadways and city streets.

While the city of Wichita got less rainfall than other communities, residents there were still forced to deal with flooding Sunday as several streets including South Meridian and the intersection of West and Pawnees streets were closed due to flooding.

Much worse off than Wichita was the community of Hutchinson as numerous roads in that town were literally turned into rivers. There were many residential streets across Hutchinson washed out from flooding and several motorists were stranded in their vehicles when they were overcome by floodwater. City workers were busy blocking off roadways Sunday night that were flooded while many homeowners in Hutchinson reported that their basements were filled with flood water. The Red Cross set up an emergency shelter in a local church Sunday evening, reporting that it could accommodate several families.

People in several areas of south central Kansas were being urged to stay at home Sunday if at all possible due to the dangers associated with driving through floodwater. Many roadways were left completely impassible Sunday night, even for emergency vehicles. Residents of a manufactured home community in Hutchinson were trapped inside their homes Sunday night as that area was flooded after nearby Cow Creek overflowed its banks.

The National Weather Service said Monday morning that over four inches of rain came down in Hutchinson Saturday night in just an hour and a half. The NWS also warned that yet another round of heavy rain may come down over parts of Kansas Monday and that dangerous cloud-to-ground lightening and hail as large as baseballs is possible as some of the storms moving into the area could be very severe.