Tuesday, 19 February, 2019

Marble Falls Orders Evacuations As Llano River Reaches 'Historic' Flooding

Flash Flooding Emergency Declared River Near Historic Level in Texas Raging floodwaters destroy bridge over Central Texas river
Patty Aguilar | 18 October, 2018, 07:52

The Llano River reached historic levels of flooding Tuesday, prompting officials in Marble Falls to order evacuations and open shelters for displaced residents.

The river was just below 15 feet on Wednesday morning after cresting 24 hours earlier at nearly 40 feet.

The Llano River rose to almost 40 feet Tuesday in the city of Llano - about 35 feet higher than it was just 24 hours earlier - after 8 to 10 inches of rain fell in the area over the past two days, the National Weather Service said.

The floodwaters overtook the bridge over the Llano River in Kingsland, located about 65 miles northwest of Austin, after the river crested at 40 feet.

In the video below, you can see the moment that the bridge collapsed.

Kingsland, where the bridge collapsed, sits in Llano County, and is the meeting point between the Llano Rove and Colorado River.

Gov. Greg Abbot on Tuesday issued a state disaster declaration for 18 counties affected by the flooding, including Llano County. Local authorities warned residents to evacuate promptly on Tuesday due to strong currents threatening homes and businesses in the area.

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A flash flood warning was put into effect, and forecasters described it as a "very risky situation".

Dillard says there haven't been other reports of deaths or injuries in the county. Video that she posted to Instagram showed water rising to the top of boat dock structures.

The governor's warning came little more than a week after four people were washed away when the South Llano River, which becomes the Llano River downstream, overran an RV park in Junction, Texas. Three bodies have been recovered.

In Austin, fire officials temporarily banned all watercraft.

"One inch of rain can produce a flooded roadway within minutes", Ron Anderson, Llano County emergency management coordinator, told ABC News affiliate KVUE in Austin. "Seek higher ground!" the National Weather Service tweeted.

In 24 hours, the river rose to 12 metres, some 10m higher than the day before, and around 5.5 metres above major flood stage. The record crest level is 12.6 metres set in June 1935.

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