Three US States Face Flooding of ‘Historic Magnitude’

Brad and Bart Hindley take a boat to Brad’s flooded house in Fort Smith, Ark., May 29, 2019. Brad said he doesn’t live in a flood plain, but flood waters from the Arkansas River continue to rise.

Thousands of Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana residents braced for more flooding Wednesday, and some evacuated their homes, as forecasts of further rain drove fears that decades-old levees girding the Arkansas River may not hold.

More than a week of violent weather, including downpours and deadly tornadoes, has lashed the central United States, bringing record-breaking floods to parts of the states, turning highways into lakes and submerging all but the roofs of some homes.

“This is a flood of historic magnitude,” Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson told a news conference Wednesday, joined by state and federal emergency officials. He said of the Arkansas River: “It’s a beautiful sight until it comes to get you.”

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