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Travel dangers in Mo. tonight; flash flooding to possible black ice

Flash flooding leads to some serious driving challenges across the Heartland.
Published: Feb. 17, 2022 at 6:46 PM CST
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SOUTHEAST Mo. (KFVS) - Flash flooding leads to some serious driving challenges across the Heartland, including in Stoddard County.

Two Missouri Department of Transportation workers closed a portion of Highway O around 3 p.m. on Thursday, February 17.

That was at County Road 309 just southeast of Advance.

Workers said they’ve also put up a lot of signs warning drivers about water over the road.

Some out-of-state travelers told us just how bad it’s been.

”Right now, I’m seeing lots and lots of rain since we’ve been on the road.”

Megan Morris was on her way from Chicago to see her husband in Mississippi. She stopped at Boomland in Benton due to the bad weather.

“We were supposed to get lots of snow, lots of ice, so we were trying to beat the storm and we just made it into it,” she said.

With about 8 hours left on her trip, she said she made a stop because she needed a break.

“It’s kind of coming down and pelting us pretty hard where it’s hard to see out of the window.”

Gregory Miller came from Iowa to visit family in Benton.

“It was a little windy last night, but we noticed it’s raining today,” he said.

He said living in Iowa, but growing up in the area means he’s used to conditions like this.

“One minute it’s nice and clear and the next morning you wake up and it’s 5 inches of snow,” he said. “So we’re kind of used to the crazy weather.”

Meantime, the Missouri Department of Transportation reports dozens of rural roads closed right now due to flooding, including portions of State Route A in Scott County and Routes F and K in Iron and Reynolds County.

You can click here to check our list of flooded roads in the Heartland.

Sargent Clark Parrott with the Missouri State Highway Patrol gave us an update.

“In Stoddard County, Route O, we had a car in the water there,” he said. “People driving through. We’ve had two instances where cars were swept off the roadway. In Butler County, just off of County Road 450, which is south of Poplar Bluff, we had a vehicle drive through high water on a gravel road. The vehicle stalled and we had to do a water rescue on them.”

Sgt. Parrott said his biggest concern tonight is freezing temperatures and the threat of black ice.

The temperature dropped on Thursday evening, causing wet roads to become slick and possibly dangerous.

“With the expected temperatures to bottom out this evening down into the teens, with it dropping as fast as it’s going to it’s going to flash freeze,” Parrott said. “So we’re anticipating black ice in some areas. And you can’t encourage people enough to slow down, give yourself following distance and leave early. And if you have to drive, especially if your driving north and west, check out the MoDOT traveling map.”

The travel map shows high water issues across southeast Missouri, and deteriorating conditions impacting travel on the west side of the state.

Sgt. Parrott said it’s a good night to stay home, if you can. If you have to get out, slow down and watch for water over the road.

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