(WJHL) — Roadways in multiple communities in Southwest Virginia are impassable following overnight flash floods, fallen trees and powerlines and mudslides.
In response, Wise County officials declared a local State of Emergency. According to county leaders, the National Weather Service reported that 6 inches of rain have fallen on the area since midnight Thursday. The locality requested Virginia to issue a State of Emergency to respond with additional resources.
Affected areas include the following:
- The Town of Pound, primarily Pound Bottom/Main Street, North Fork and South Fork
- Bondtown and Tom’s Creek areas of Coeburn
- Town of Wise Main Street and Birchfield
Both Pound and Coeburn issued evacuation notices and established shelters for residents fleeing the aftermath of the floods. Shelter locations include the following:
- James W. Adams Elementary School at 10824 Orby Cantrell Highway, Pound, Virginia
- Wise Volunteer Fire Department Bingo Hall at 307 Norton Road, Wise, Virginia
- Coeburn Middle School at 518 Centre Ave. NE, Coeburn, Virginia
For those who cannot safely evacuate their homes, a shelter in place is in effect as Appalachia Swift Water Rescue Team continues to conduct rescues in the affected areas. The Virginia Swift Water Rescue Team and the Bristol Swift Water Rescue Team are on the way to assist in the efforts.
WISE COUNTY, VIRGINIA
Flash floods led to evacuations or shelter in place in the Pound Bottom area.
James W. Adams Elementary School at 10824 Orby Cantrell Highway will be set up as the designated shelter for evacuated residents.
An Emergency Operations Center (EOC) has been established at the Wise County Sheriff’s Office, according to Sheriff Grant Kilgore.
Officials announced at 8 a.m. that US 23 north and southbound lanes near mile marker 52.8 and Cars R Us have been shut down to all traffic. Drivers are advised to find another route. By 11:30 a.m., News Channel 11 crews observed that the northbound lanes have since reopened. However, the southbound lanes remain closed.
Standing water has been reported on US 23 North near the traffic signals before Double Kwik. The sheriff’s office reported that a fallen tree had been blocking both lanes of Main Street in Pound near the Wildcat gas station. Crews have since cleared the blockage.
Route 58 near Midway Church westbound traffic was at a standstill due to a fallen tree, which has since been cleared. Another fallen tree had previously blocked Dungannon Road near Job Corps, and crews cleared the roadways.
Multiple mudslides have been reported across the county, including on Main Street, Duncan Gap Road and Meade Fork Road in Pound — where a large tree has fallen as well.
Birchfield Road near the Dotson Creek Road intersection has a power line down across both lanes, and AEP has been notified. Multiple sections of Birchfield remain under water.
Halfway up the mountain on Toms Creek Road is partially blocked by a fallen tree, and flooding is reported near the coal tipple at the bottom of the street. Virginia Department of Transportation crews are at the scene.
Sections of Duncan Gap Road are covered in mudslides and are not passable, the sheriff’s office reports. Roundtop Road is passable as of 5:15 a.m., but the only alternate route for that section is Duncan Gap Road.
The Pound Bottom area remains underwater, and off-duty officers are alerting residents door-to-door.
At 6:48 a.m., the Wise County PSA experienced a major waterline break in the Bold Camp area of Pound. Officials issued a boil water advisory for the Bold Camp and Mill Creek areas. This includes customers on Bold Camp Road, Right Fork Road, Meade Fork Raod, McFall Fork Road, Mountain Cove Road, Gary Powers Road, River Hill Road, Little Road and Sunnydale Farm Road.
Customers should not drink tap water without first bringing it to a rolling boil for at least a minute and allowing it to cool. This will be in effect until further notice. For more information, click here.
Wise County officials had previously posted onto their social media platforms regarding water outages due to an unknown source.
Rescue crew members captured rescue missions following the aftermath of the floods.
Coeburn officials announced at 11:30 a.m. Thursday that the town called for evacuations and a shelter in place.
A shelter has been set up for evacuees at Coeburn Middle School located at 518 Centre Ave. NE due to flooding. Residents and drivers are urged to stay out of high water and dial 911 for assistance if needed.
DICKENSON COUNTY, VIRGINIA — CLINTWOOD AREA
The Clintwood Police Department in Dickenson County reported Thursday morning that heavy rain affected Jesse Street, Pioneer Street and Dickenson Highway near the Gas and Go. The agency also reported flooding on Brush Creek-Cutter Creek intersections and Goins Fork.
As of 10:40 a.m., Dickenson County Sheriff Jeremy Fleming told News Channel 11 that multiple roads throughout the county were closed due to the flooding.
“We are advising everyone to stay off of the roadways,” Fleming said.
In a post from the sheriff’s office, fallen rocks could be seen blocking Flanagan Dam Road.
This is a developing story. Stay updated on WJHL.com.