Bald Knob still recovering from flood

By BETH CRACE State Journal Staff Writer Published:

It's still too early to tell the extent of damage caused by flash floods that hit Franklin County early Friday afternoon, destroying or severely damaging much in their path.

The floods damaged several homes in the northern part of the county, and took the lives of two Franklin County residents.

Franklin County Judge-Executive Teresa Barton said today county and state officials would be meeting later this morning to coordinate relief efforts. Barton said officials want to make sure they have "every base covered" in terms of providing services for residents hit by floods.

Everything from restoring utilities to determining if the county qualifies for federal relief will be discussed, Barton said. The main focus, for now, is restoring all roads, bridges and utilities in the flood-affected area.

Barton said county officials are asking motorists to stay off roads in the area until services are restored. Only people who live in the area, or are helping people should be traveling in the area and there are alternate routes for other drivers, Barton said.

"Unless you need to be there, we don't want people on the roads," said Barton.

The Franklin County chapter of the American Red Cross was still doing damage assessment this morning to figure out the extent of flood damage. Paula Rutledge, the executive director of the local chapter, said today the agency has been taking more messages from people whose homes need to be assessed.

On Saturday, Rutledge said the Red Cross did seven flood damage assessments in the Bald Knob area. Damage assessments are criteria set forth by the organization to evaluate damage and provide relief.

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