County crews close several flooded roads

Published 9:52 am Wednesday, March 10, 2010

City and county crews have been forced to close several roads across the county as the area has been hit with more than 5 inches of rain.

As of about 3:30 p.m. March 10, the Shelby County Highway Department had closed portions of Shelby County 42 in Shelby, Shelby County 47 in Shelby and Shelby County 77 between Columbiana and Wilsonville.

Crews had also closed Shelby County 39, the 200 block of Liberty Road and Crenshaw Swamp Road in Chelsea. Alabama 119 in Indian Springs, Shelby County 87 in Calera and Shelby County 56 in Columbiana were also closed.

Several roads had also been closed in Alabaster due to the heavy flooding.

An Alabaster Police Department dispatcher confirmed three roads had been shut down due to flooding, including U.S. 31 in front of Shelby Baptist Medical Center, Shelby County 17 near Fox Valley and the Sterling Gate subdivision and 1st Ave. W. by the Albert L. Scott Library.

Flooding has also been reported at the Shelby County Instructional Services Building, where the parking lot is so flooded that many cars have water up to their roofs.

Several roads in Pelham had also been closed due to flash flooding.

Pelham Police confirmed at least nine roads have been closed, including Stonehaven Trail where it crosses Buck Creek, State Park Road, Bella Vista, the 1800 block of Chandalar Court, the 600 block of Creekview Lane, Oak Mountain Circle, Creekside Lane, Hines Street and Dickerson Road.

Pelham Police Lt. Pete Folmar said drivers should use caution as more rain moves through the area tonight.

“Don’t drive across standing water,” Folmar said. “That’s the number one advice.”

Helena and Montevallo officials reported high water in some parts of their cities, but neither had closed any roads as of 3:30 p.m.

However, the Helena Police Department worked to rescue a woman who was swept away by fast-moving water at her home on Woodvale Road, said Helena Police Capt. Tim Carter.

“The woman had fallen into some water in her backyard, and it swept her into a drainage ditch,” Carter said. “One of our officers responded to the house, and was able to locate her and get a hold of her until they were able to pull her to safety.

“I think they sent her to the hospital just to get checked out,” he added.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Department reported several flooded ponds and streams throughout the county, and urged county residents to be cautious when outdoors.

“As a general rule, 6 inches of flowing water can cause a vehicle to lose traction and be swept up in the current, so the Sheriff’s Office recommends avoiding any area where there is doubt about access or possibility,” read a Sheriff’s Office press release.

“The impending weather forecast calls for continued rain and wind gusts over the next 24 hours. Road conditions may continue to deteriorate,” the release read. “The Sheriff’s Office would ask that unless travel is necessary, consider staying at home.”