Fire Department Warns Of Flash Flooding

altWith Tulsa under a Flood Watch through Friday afternoon, the Tulsa Fire Department is urging residents to watch out for flash flooding.

Approximately 200 people die each year from flash flooding. Motorists who ignore warnings about not driving through deep water are at serious risk, the department said. Cars can stall in deep waters, or be swept off the road; drives can become trapped.

Darren Stefanek, Manager of Street Maintenance for the City of Tulsa, said the following are the most frequently flooded streets in Tulsa:

4300 South Sheridan, 18500 E 41st Street, 20100 E 11th Street, 1800 N Mingo Rd., 2900 N. Garnett, 11000 E 36 Street N, 5500 N Mingo Rd., 100 West 81 Street, 8600 South Elwood, 30 Th and S Riverside Drive, 800 N Lewis 6200 to 6400 S Lewis, Cameron  and Denver Ave

The Fire Department is asking residents to heed these warnings:

1. Never drive through a roadway in which you cannot see the surface of the road. Water as shallow as 6 inches will stall most vehicles, water around 2 feet deep will wash most vehicles, including SUVs, off of a roadway.

2. If you encounter water flowing across the roadway, immediately turn around and find another route.

3. Stay away from underpasses. Underpasses can fill rapidly with water, while the adjacent roadway remains clear. Driving into an underpass can quickly put you in five to six feet of water.

4. If you find yourself stalled in rising water, if you can safely do so, immediately exit your vehicle and proceed to higher ground. A current flowing at 6 mph pushes against a person with a force of 134 pounds, but a current flowing at 12 mph will be pushing against a person at 538 pounds.

5. Never go around road barricades warning of high water.

6. If you do not believe you can safely exit your vehicle, remain in it and immediately call 911 and give your location.