Shelly Schultz

Miami News-Record

Ottawa County has been inundated with water over the past several days, causing dangerous flooding in many parts of the county and surrounding areas.

At 3 p.m., Tuesday, the Neosho rose beyond its 15.0 flood stage and continued to rise over the next five days.

It finally crest shortly after 1 p.m., Saturday at 22.21.

With more rain in the forecast over the next three to four days and heavy rains forecast north into Kansas, the possibility of continued flooding can not be ignored, according to officials.

At least 69 of Oklahoma's 77 counties remained under flood watches or warnings on Saturday.

The heavy rainfall remained in the central and southeastern parts of the state, sparing the saturated counties of Cherokee, Delaware, Mayes and Rogers in northeastern Oklahoma, where more than a half-foot of rain fell on Friday.

Salina and Locust Grove, lost water service after their pumping stations flooded, Janzen said, although Salina hoped to have their system repaired by Saturday afternoon. He said in the interim, the Cherokee Nation was trucking water into the towns.

Wet roads and low visibility was blamed for numerous minor accidents in and around Miami Friday.

Friday evening Miami firefighters responded to Tar Creek, east of Miami, where a canoe had capsized.

The occupants of the canoe were found clinging to trees in the middle of Tar Creek at approximately 6:37 p.m. Firefighters were on the scene for about one and a half hours rescuing the subjects from the creek.

Low visibility contributed to an accident on Highway 125, west of Grove early Sunday morning, according to the highway patrol.

Authorities say Travis Wescott, 27, of Grove was driving southbound on Highway 125, three miles west of grove at approximately 7:45 a.m.

Westcott came upon a truck pulling a boat that was stopped in the road. Authorities say Westcott ran off the right side of the road to avoid a collision and struck a culvert.

The 2004 Chevrolet pickup Westcott was driving went airborn for approximately 35 feet, struck the ground and slid 50 feet before coming to a rest.

Westcott was transported to a Joplin, Mo., hospital where he was admitted in good condition.

In Mayes County, authorities performed 41 water rescues on Thursday and it still wasn't known how many homes had been affected by floodwaters.

River flooding also may become an issue in northeastern Oklahoma as the Caney, Illinois and Verdigris rivers are expected to crest above flood stage in the next few days. The weather service issued a flood warning for the Poteau River near Poteau in Le Flore County in southeastern Oklahoma from Saturday night through Sunday morning.

Meteorologist Doug Speheger in Norman said the statewide forecast called for more intermittent rain on Sunday with a higher chance in eastern Oklahoma then drier conditions on Monday before increasing chances of rain on Tuesday.

As of Sunday evening, the following highways were closed due to high water:

Ottawa County

In Miami SH-125 is closed at the fairgrounds

US-59/SH-10 is closed at Coal Creek, about 3 miles west of Miami

Washington County near Copan

SH-10 is closed east and west of the US-75 junction

Mayes County near Adair

SH-28 is closed east of US-69 near Adair

Cotton County north of Taylor, near the Texas border

SH-5B is closed just north of the SH-5B/US-70 junction

Nowata County east of Lenapah

SH-10 is closed approximately 4 miles east of US-169 over Cedar Creek

By Shelly Schultz 542-5533

shelly.schultz@miaminewsrecord.com