By JESS MANCINI
The Parkersburg News and Sentinel
PARKERSBURG, W.Va. — Emergency officials are preparing for the worst and hoping for the best these next few days when the Ohio River is forecast to flood for the second time in 10 days.
Residents are being urged to make preparations, either by moving property to higher ground or making arrangements to stay somewhere else with family, friends or other accommodations, Rick Woodyard, director of the 911 Center in Wood County, said on Friday.
“We’re just wanting to get ahead of the game,” he said.
Woodyard on Friday assembled Todd Wines of the American Red Cross, Sgt. Joshua Allen of the West Virginia Army National Guard, Wood County Commissioner Blair Couch and Mike Shook, assistant Homeland Security and Emergency Management-assistant 911 director.
“The weather service says confidence is high” that the river will crest above flood stage, Shook said.
At 2:30 p.m. Friday, the National Weather Service in Charleston predicted the river to crest at 44 feet at 1 a.m. Tuesday at Belleville, 9 feet above floodstage. The river crested at 39.7 feet last week.
At the confluence of the Ohio and Little Kanawha rivers at Parkersburg and Belpre, the Ohio River is forecast to crest at 41.5 feet at 7 p.m. Monday, 5.5 feet above flood stage.
The river will crest at Marietta at 39.7 feet at 1 a.m. Tuesday, over 4.5 feet above floodstage, the weather service said.
“We’re getting into the major flood stage in this area,” Wines said.
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