Danville flooding has become more frequent in recent years


DANVILLE, Va. (WFXR) — Danville Public Works Director Rick Drazenovich expected the Dan River to crest at 28 feet by 8 p.m. on Friday, similar to another flood back in February.

The city says this level of flooding had become more common in the past few years.

“I mean it’s a good six feet of water in this parking lot,” said Scottsburg resident Melissa Powell, who was in Danville for a doctor’s appointment. “It’s up to those doors over there, so that’s at least four feet. It’s scary.”

Powell had been driving through Martinsville and Danville for appointments on Friday, May 22 and she saw a lot of flooding in the region.

“The water is up to the roads in a lot of places, and there are fields that have like been completely washed out.”

“Well it’s about 26 feet now,” Drazenovich said to WFXR at 1 p.m. on Friday, “and it’s predicted to crest about 28 feet at 8:00 this evening.”

By 5 p.m. on Friday, a spokesperson for the City of Danville said the river had risen to 27 feet, which is similar to what the city saw three months ago.

Drazenovich says his department has a good understanding of where the water flows at those levels, and they are able to act quickly.

“It means we’ve got seven or eight streets that are blocked and detoured. It does not generally mean that a lot of residential is flooded, but some of the downtown businesses get their basements and their lower stories flooded.”

By 1 p.m. on Friday, his department had closed another street, as the Dan River started flowing onto Memorial Drive at Park Avenue. It’s a sign of flooding to come for Powell in Scottsburg.

“It’s not too bad, but it will be. It’ll get there around Saturday or Sunday,” she said. “Because when this floods here, it takes a day or two to get there.”

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