Saturday, October 8, 2016

DISASTER HITS OUR BEAUTIFUL NORTH CAROLINA: Sandhills dams near failure, Fayetteville declares mandatory curfew

Sandhills dams near failure, Fayetteville declares mandatory curfew

Saturday, October 08, 2016 05:46PM
FAYETTEVILLE (WTVD) -- Fayetteville Mayor Nat Robertson has declared a mandatory curfew from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. because of the number of people emergency workers have had to rescue from flooded vehicles as Hurricane Matthew dumps heavy rain on the city.

The city is also asking churches not to hold Sunday morning services.

Sampson County has a curfew from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.

The situation in Fayetteville is deteriorating rapidly. City officials say Lake Upchurch Dam is approaching failure and the Greenock Avenue Dam in the Arran Lakes area is overtopping and officials are warning that the probability of it failing is high. People in the area are encouraged to evacuate to a shelter set up at South View High School.

A house is flooded in the Arran Lakes West neighborhood of Fayetteville after a possible dam breach.

Evacuations are also underway in nearby Hoke County for two dams near failure and officials are monitoring dams in Moore and Bladen counties as well.

National Weather Service has declared a Flash Flood Emergency in Cumberland County through 5:30 p.m. Saturday as water rescues continue.

The City of Fayetteville called the situation "critical and life threatening." Residents are advised to stay off the roads and shelter in place.

Emergency responders are also headed to more roads and neighborhoods that are becoming flooded. Crews have reported 72 water rescues. There are 107 residents in shelters.

Because of the storm and the number of calls for service, residents are asked to only call 911 for emergencies. Emergency responders are currently only responding to emergencies.

The Harnett County Sheriff's Office is asking for people to stay home. He said there are about 25 roads closed in the county.

Much of the Sandhills is already water-logged from serious flooding a week ago, and now the area is anticipating another 5 to 9 inches of drenching rain courtesy of Hurricane Matthew.

The city of Fayetteville has asked businesses to close early and send workers home.

Officials are telling people to never drive through water if it's over the road.

Chief Meteorologist Chris Hohmann explains the dangers of driving during flooding conditions.

Public Works Commission reports they have about 1,500 customers without electric service. The majority of the customers out are in the Shenandoah Dr., Bear Creek, Pepperbush Lane, South Bingham Drive locations.