Tri-State drying out from weekend storm system
HUNTINGTON - A one-two combo of heavy rain Saturday and strong, sustained winds Sunday left a mess across the Tri-State as the work week began Monday, though damages appear moderate and localized.
What seemed like a two-day-long storm, split between two acts of rain and wind, dumped up to 1.5 inches of rain overnight Saturday, followed by a clear but powerfully windy Sunday with gusts topping out near 60 mph.
Muddy high water spilling over from the nearby confluence of the Mud and Guyandotte rivers in Barboursville continued to keep U.S. 60 closed near the Merritts Creek Road intersection - the only main or secondary road in Cabell County still closed by flooding.
In Milton, backed-up feeder streams weaving behind town spilled into dozens of properties, including Milton Elementary School’s playground. The Mud River was again true to its name as it swallowed the flood plains along Pumpkin Park in a watery brown mess. Guyan River Road was under water near Barboursville and in a couple of spots about a mile or so east of Altizer.
The Ohio River climbed to a slow peak Monday evening at 49 feet in Huntington, according to the National Weather Service - one foot shy of flood stage. The river will remain just as high through Tuesday and most of Wednesday before steadily receding back to normal by Sunday, NWS projects.
The river just barely reached flood stage in Ashland and Greenup, Kentucky, hitting 53 feet on Monday. The Ohio is typically a constant few feet higher in Boyd and Greenup counties than it is upstream in Cabell County.
Saturated soil and high winds toppled even the most well-rooted old trees, contributing to more than 50,000 Appalachian Power customers losing power over the weekend, according to AEP. Sunday’s all-day winds impeded crews working to restore power, because they cannot safely operate aloft from bucket lifts in winds over 30 mph.
About 773 Cabell County customers remained without power Monday evening, mostly scattered in small pockets around the county. Some rural areas are not projected to have power restored until late Tuesday night, including 81 customers on Wild Cat Hollow Road in Barboursville and 40 customers on Deer Pen Road in Ona.
In the Wayne County area, 157 customers remained without power as of Monday.
Drivers can stay up to date on the latest driving conditions and travel alerts by visiting www.wv511.org.
For the most up-to-date information on Watches, Warnings and Advisories for West Virginia, visit https://alerts.weather.gov/cap/wv.php?x=1.