LIVE BLOG: KS Turnpike reopens in Sumner County

Published: May. 9, 2019 at 1:06 PM CDT
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The week is almost over and so is heavy rain, but flooding continues across parts of south-central Kansas.

Friday, May 10, 2019

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has rescinded a boil water advisory for the City of Augusta.


10:15 p.m.

The Kansas Turnpike is back open in both directions between Wellington and the Kansas/Oklahoma line.

Late Thursday night, the Kansas Turnpike Authority tweeted the update with video showing the repair work unfold.


8:50 p.m.

The Kansas Turnpike Authority says progress continues towards reopening the turnpike between Wellington and the Kansas/Oklahoma line, but as of about 8:30 p.m. northbound traffic remains closed in this stretch. One southbound lane is open.

The City of Halstead continues to closely watch river levels as crews already had to close one of its three floodgates that keep water from the Little Arkansas River from rushing through Main Street.

Halstead officials say the floodgates had been closed for years. Thursday, Eyewitness News spoke with people in the community who remember devastation brought to the town before the floodgates were built in 1994. Before then, devastating floods hit Main Street multiple times, records show.

Even though people in Halstead have been able to keep water out of town, flooding has impacted people who have farmland or live on property outside the city.

In Wichita, the Big Ditch is doing its job to prevent devastating flooding in the city. Still, water levels are high enough for the ditch to more closely resemble a river.

Also helping to prevent widespread flooding in Wichita are 97 levees, eight pump stations and 12 flood walls. The Big Ditch protects about 83,000 structures in an area that includes $33 billion worth of property, statistics collected in 2017 show.


4:23 p.m.

The Kansas Turnpike Authority says a flooded stretch of I-35 could re-open to travelers Thursday night "if progress continues at current pace."

KTA closed the highway on Wednesday after it was submerged under high water from the Slate Creek. The flooding caused at least one vehicle to wash off the road.

Traffic was detoured to Highway 77 in Cowley County and US-81 in Sumner County. Both stretches of road are now dealing with some flooding creating backups in Wellington and Winfield.

Gov. Laura Kelly issued an emergency disaster declaration for 15 counties on Thursday. While there were several water rescue, no injuries have been reported with the recent flooding.


3:10 p.m.

Gov. Laura Kelly has issued an emergency disaster declaration for 15 Kansas counties impacted by recent severe storms and flooding.

The declaration impacts the following counties: Barber, Chase, Clark, Cowley, Geary, Greenwood, Harvey, Marion, Meade, Neosho, Osage, Ottawa, Reno, Rice, Sumner. it may be amended to include any additional counties that experience flooding.

The declaration authorizes the use of state resources and personnel to assist with response and recovery operations in affected counties that meet certain criteria. It also activates the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC).

"I want to urge people to avoid playing in or around a flooded stream," said Kelly. "There may be dangerous floating debris, hidden underwater obstacles, and treacherous currents. Please don't try to launch a boat or swim in the water. Even fishing or walking along the bank can be dangerous because the bank may be slippery or easily collapse. Flood waters demand our utmost respect."

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is providing sandbags and coordinating with local officials in Chase County.

KDEM deployed a regional coordinator to Chase County to work with local emergency management.

There are currently river gauges in major and moderate flooding stage with the majority in southcentral and southeast Kansas.

Road closures have been reported in Atchison, Clay, Chase, Cowley, Doniphan, Harvey, Leavenworth, Lyon, Marion, Marshall, Osage, Reno, Rice, Saline, and Sumner County. Within Sumner County, I-35 northbound is currently closed between South Haven and Wellington. Rachel Bell with the Kansas Turnpike Authority says there is no timeline on when the damaged stretch of road will re-open.

Local disaster declarations have been issued in Barber, Chase, Clark, Cowley, Geary, Greenwood, Harvey, Marion, Meade, Neosho, Osage, Ottawa, Reno, Rice, Sumner and Wilson Counties.

The SEOC will remain activated throughout today and continue to monitor flood forecasting to determine support needs.

"Because people underestimate the force and power of water, KDEM is reminding the public to avoid walking or driving through flood waters. Each year, more deaths occur due to flooding than from any other thunderstorm-related hazard. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that over half of all flood-related drownings occur when a vehicle is driven into hazardous flood water. Even 18 inches of water is sufficient to float a vehicle and it only takes six inches of fast-moving flood water to knock an adult off his feet. Turn around don't drown."


3:06 p.m.

The Reno County Emergency Management says US Hwy 50 is closed from Yoder/Airport Rd to US Hwy Meridian (in Harvey County).


1:46 p.m.

The City of Wichita says due to continued high water conditions there will be no lighting at the Keeper of the Plains Thursday night.

A look at SkyCam 12 shows the flooding where the Big and Little Arkansas rivers meet. You can see the water has come out of its banks covering sidewalks and even some benches along the river.

is reported along the Arkansas River throughout south-central Kansas. The City of Halstead closed one of its floodgates Thursday morning as the Little Arkansas River continues to rise.

Storm Team 12 says storms and spotty showers are expected as the week comes to a close and into the weekend, but the heavy rainfall is over. Mother's Day should be dry.

HIGH AND SWIFT: Here's another LIVE LOOK at the Arkansas River in downtown Wichita. Water continues to cover several of the sidewalks. if you take a closer look, you'll see the water is also moving quickly. #storm12

Posted by KWCH 12 Eyewitness News on Thursday, May 9, 2019


1:06 p.m.

The City of Halstead closed one of its flood gates Thursday morning to keep the Little Arkansas River form coming into town.

Floodwater caused damage and closed roads across the region, including portions of the

between Wellington and the Oklahoma state line. The Kansas Turnpike Authority says I-35 remains closed between milepost 4 and milepost 19 northbound due to the flooding. Southbound I-35 is open but will have a lane restriction in that area.

Storm Team 12 says there won't be any more heavy rain for a few days but we'll see a few showers today along with

. Showers and storms will be possible Friday night and Saturday but nothing severe and no heavy rain, but Mother's Day should be dry.

You can find a list of currect road closures below:
Cowley County:

 US 166 from the roundabout at the Walnut River

 U.S. 77 between the northern Winfield city limits and 132nd Rd (Cowley 18)

 Chestnut Ave between US 77 and the bridge

 256th Rd between 1st and 11th Rd (culvert damage)

 256th and 252nd from 1st to 31st

 21st Rd at 192nd Rd (flooding)

 26th Rd between 61st Rd and western edge of Rock (river flooding)

 211th Rd at 62nd Rd (flooding)

 242nd between 11th and 31st

 211th between 92nd and 102nd

 71st Road south of Hackney at 222nd

 202nd from 11th-21st

 W. 14th St in Winfield west of RR tracks to Country Club Rd.

 US 77 (Main Street) in Winfield between 8th and 9th Streets

 71st (Green's Farm) from just N. of US 166

 212th 1 mile east of 101st at the Walnut River

 132nd Road (Cowley 18) 2 miles west of US 77 from just west of the Walnut River Bridge to 41st Road

 11th Road in Bolton Township from 256th Road (Cowley 10) to 272nd Road

 151st Road (Cowley 1) just south of Silverdale at the 1st Grouse Creek Bridge

 286th Road (Cowley 16 or West Chestnut) east of 41st Road up to the Arkansas River Bridge (West Chestnut


 296th Road at 101st (one lane closed)

River levels change by the hour; however, as of the morning of May 9, the Walnut River at Winfield has crested at

over 36 feet. The Walnut River at Arkansas City is expected to crest today at over 28 feet. Also in Arkansas City, the Arkansas

River has crested above 20 feet. These two rivers are expected to remain at flood stage for several days, affecting many other tributaries throughout

Cowley County.

Harvey County:

▪️Halstead Road from U.S. Highway 50 to north end of city limits

▪️Halstead Road north of U.S. Highway 50

▪️West First Street from Mission to Emma Creek roads

▪️Southwest 24th Street from Mission to Emma Creek roads

▪️South Meridian Road from 24th to 36th streets

▪️K-89 from Halstead to U.S. Highway 50

▪️South Old Settlers Road from U.S. Highway 50 to First Street

▪️Southwest 36th Street at South Emma Creek Road

▪️The 1800 to 1900 block of North Hoover Road

▪️North Hoover Road north of First Street at the bridge

▪️Northwest 108th Street and North Hoover Road at the bridge

▪️Fourth Street and Madison Avenue to the west

▪️Madison Avenue from First to Fourth streets

▪️Adams Street between McPherson and Sedgwick roads

▪️Northeast 12th Street between East Lake's Bluestem Area

▪️South Emma Creek Road at Southwest 96th Street

▪️South River Park Road from U.S. Highway 50 to Southwest 36th Street

▪️Northwest 36th Street west of West Road

▪️The 9900 block of Northeast 96th Street

▪️Northwest 24th Street between Meridian and West roads

▪️South Mission Road north and south of U.S. Highway 50 and north of First Street

▪️Northwest 24th Street west and east of Ridge Road

▪️Northwest 24th Street west of North Mission Road

▪️North Ridge Road between 12th and 72nd streets

▪️North Hoover Road between Dutch Avenue and Northwest 96th Street

▪️Harvey County West Park

▪️Several Areas of Harvey County East Park

High Water Areas

▪️North River Park Road from Northwest 36th to 72nd streets

▪️South Sandhill Road north and south of U.S. Highway 50

▪️Southwest 36th Street and South Prairie Lake Road

▪️Southwest 48th Street between Essex Heights and Hertzler roads

▪️Southwest 36th Street at Emma Creek

▪️The 9200 block of South West Road

▪️Southwest 48th Street between Meridian and West roads

▪️The 3900 block of South Meridian Road

▪️The 6200 block of South West Road

▪️The 5400 block of West First Street

▪️South Woodlawn Avenue at First Street

▪️Southwest 48th Street at South Kansas

▪️Southwest 125th Street at South Kansas

▪️Northeast 12th Street between North Grace Hill and East Lake roads

▪️The 5800 block of Northwest 48th Street

▪️Southwest 48th Street at South Hertzler Road

At this time, the National Weather Service projects the Little Arkansas River in Alta Mills and Halstead will crest Friday. Please follow

for more information on flooding in that area.

Reno County: Wilson 56th to 69th Wilson 69th to 95nd Dean 56th to 82nd 4th from Dean to Herren 50th Wilson to Pennington 56th Riverton to Nickerson 56th Pennington to Wilson 69th Nickerson Blvd to Yaggy Rd 69th Dean to Hendricks Herren 69th to 82nd Sun City from K14 to McNew Old K61 Medora to the dead end Summers from 75th to 85th Mayfield from 69th to 82nd 56th from Mayfield to Kent Red Rock from K14 to McNew 69th from Mayfield to Medora Red Rock from K14 to Valley Pride Arlington from Haven to Victory Parallel Rd from McNew Road to DeWeese Park at Cheney Lake McNew from K96 to Trails West Netherland from Longview to Red Rock Olcott from Red Rock to Greenfield Brownlee from US HWY 50 to Greenfield Jordan Springs Rd from Trails West to Lake Cable Sylvia from US HWY 50 to Trails West Greenfield from Olcott to Jordan Springs 82nd from Sunrise to Willison High Point from Longview to Red Rock Salem from Maple Grove to County Line Sun City from Partridge to Riverton Dean 82nd to 108th Riverton 82nd to 95th 95th Ave from Tobacco Rd to Medora Rd SB off ramp K61 at Medora NB off ramp K61 from Medora Medora Rd from 95th to 108th Buhler Road from 56th to 69th 82nd Ave from Mayfield to Kent 85th Ave from Old K61 to Mayfield 56th Avenue from Eisenhower to Wilson Road 82nd Avenue from Pennington to Yaggy

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