Update: Rain-soaked Mississippi set for more significant flooding problems
Update: Widespread flooding, storm damage prompt state of emergency in Louisiana
A slow-moving storm system is impacting much of central and south Mississippi with excessive rainfall and flooding with some damage reported from severe storms early Thursday.
Emergency management officials reported mudslides in Adams and Warren counties with trees down in the Natchez area including down on homes.
Adams County Emergency Management Director Stan Owens said that as of 9:30 a.m. his office had 12 reports of roads blocked by trees or mudslides, the Natchez Democrat newspaper reported.
The mudslide in the Vicksburg area was blocking traffic on Mission 66 near the Warren County Chamber of Commerce building. High water rescues had also been reported in the area.
One of the rescues took place on Woodvine Road, where a mother and daughter had been trapped in a flooded car, Warren County emergency officials said.
Law enforcement in Jefferson County reported multiple trees blown down county-wide including in the city of Fayette due to earlier storms. According to Entergy, more than 1,300 residents lost power as the storm moved through this area.
Downed trees were also reported along the Natchez Trace Parkway and Mississippi Highway 547 near Port Gibson in Claiborne County.
Sharkey County residents in the Anguilla area reported flood waters were nearing their homes and in the Bude area of Franklin County, several businesses and homes were inundated with flood waters.
The heavy rains have also resulted in multiple accidents across the Jackson metro area.
One crash involved several vehicles that blocked all northbound lanes of a section of Interstate 55 at the Elton Road exit in Jackson around 10:30 a.m., the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) reported.
A Jackson police officer was working the scene of another crash on I-55 North when he said he heard the crash. Two pickup trucks were involved in another wreck near the first crash, the officer said.
All lanes of Interstate 20 westbound past Tiffintown Road in Warren County were temporarily shutdown after a tree fell across the road and caused a 18-wheeler, trying to go around the fallen tree, to overturn around 1 p.m., according to MDOT.
Soil conditions are at saturation from above normal rainfall over the last several weeks across much of the state and with any additional rainfall, has been resulting in widespread flooding and excess run-off problems.
The National Weather Service expanded a previously issued flash flood watch to include all of central and much of southern Mississippi until at least 6 p.m. Thursday. Dozens of flash flood warnings have already been issued.
The watch covers the counties of Adams, Amite, Attala, Bolivar, Carroll, Choctaw, Claiborne, Clarke, Clay, Copiah, Covington, Forrest, Franklin, Grenada, Hinds, Holmes, Humphreys, Issaquena, Jasper, Jefferson, Jefferson Davis, Jones, Kemper, Lamar, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Leake, Leflore, Lincoln, Lowndes, Madison, Marion, Montgomery, Neshoba, Newton, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Pearl River, Pike, Rankin, Scott, Sharkey, Simpson, Smith, Sunflower, Walthall, Warren, Washington, Webster, Wilkinson, Winston and Yazoo.
A moderate to heavy rain band moving across the state had dumped two to more than four inches of rainfall across the state as of early Thursday afternoon.
The city of Vicksburg is one of the hardest hit areas with a daily record 5.30 inches of rainfall, shattering the previous record of 2.10 inches set way back in 1968.
In addition, some possible severe storms including isolated tornadoes could occur along the leading edge of the heavy rain band.
A tornado watch was in effect through Thursday afternoon for portions of southern and east-central Mississippi.
Everyone is strongly advised to stay updated on the latest weather information as it becomes available.
This storm system is expected to clear the state by late Thursday with drier conditions moving in briefly on Friday before more rain and possible storms return over the weekend.
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