Flash floods force residents into temporary shelter - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Flash floods force residents into temporary shelter, water begins to recede

Flood waters reached levels up to three feet at the Wolf River Greenway. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) Flood waters reached levels up to three feet at the Wolf River Greenway. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
Seven people were rescued from the homes and more than a dozen have relocated to a temporary shelter. (WMC Action News 5) Seven people were rescued from the homes and more than a dozen have relocated to a temporary shelter. (WMC Action News 5)

(WMC) - Sunday night, 160 people from the Wheel Estates community in Whitehaven stayed at a temporary shelter located at the Hickory Hill Community Center.

The water has already dropped in many of the flooded areas around the Mid-South. The City of Memphis says because there so much rain in such a short period of time, storm water drains just couldn't handle it.

Within six hours, areas of Memphis saw almost six inches of rain on Sunday. It was coming down in buckets just after 5:30 a.m., and Ronald Bennett noticed water starting to build up outside his home. 

"Once it started coming through my heater vents and coming through the front door, I knew it was time to go," said Bennett. "So I grabbed the cats, put them in a flotation device."

Bennett then went from house to house waking up his neighbors and warning them of the flash flood waters.

"Everybody was walking around in water up to their knees," added Bennett.

Tony Marshall lives just up the street and though the water spared his home, he watched as many of his neighbors scrambled to get out.

"I've been here 34 years and I've never seen this happen," said Marshall.

In all, seven people were rescued from their homes and more than 100 were displaced by the flood waters.

Jose Cebrian was one of them.

"I saw a big puddle of water going towards my house and I was like, okay let's go," said Cebrian.

But if the water didn't displace residents, it overflowed into streets and parks.

The water was high at the Wolf River Greenway; the parking lot and a trail overflowed with water. WMC Action News 5 found several people stopping to see the high waters.

"It's around three feet at least you know," said Eric Alexander.

Water and power has been turned off in the mobile home park, and many people likely won't get to into their homes until Monday.

As for those displaced by the flood waters, the Red Cross says that shelter will stay open as long as they are needed. The group, manned by volunteers, is working in conjunction with the City of Memphis and Shelby County Emergency Management Agency to ensure everyone who needs help receives it.

Copyright 2014 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved. 

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