- The Washington Times
Sunday, February 16, 2020

Mississippi’s governor declared a state of emergency Saturday as the Pearl River continued to rise and flooding hit Jackson, the state capital.

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves urged residents in low-lying areas to evacuate as the swollen river continued to rise.

The Pearl River was expected to hit 38 feet late Saturday night or early Sunday, the highest level it has reached in decades.

At that point, the flooding is expected to extend beyond the northern areas of the capital and potentially lap at some buildings downtown, according to the National Weather Service.

The situation appeared dicey Friday, and by Saturday the river was close to 36 feet, some 8 feet above flood level.

The Pearl River reached a record height of 43.3 feet in 1979.

Close to 2,500 homes were believed affected by the flooding late Saturday, although there were no reports of deaths or serious injuries.

The NWS also called for another 1 to 2 inches of rain to fall in the area through Tuesday and Wednesday, increasing the likeliness of flash flooding around central Mississippi.

• James Varney can be reached at jvarney@washingtontimes.com.

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