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State EMA urges drivers not to drive through barricaded roads during weather events

Published: Oct. 8, 2021 at 9:56 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - State leaders are now assessing flood damage and looking for ways to improve their flood response, but drivers can help.

Officials with state emergency management said they got a lot of calls during Wednesday’s flood of cars driving past roadblocks and barriers.

EMA director Brian Hastings said during flooding events, police put out barricades for many reasons. One is because the road is flooded and the water is moving fast enough to take a car under. He said even if you don’t see water on the road past the barricades, it doesn’t mean drive on it. Hastings said there were many roads blocked off because the water caused structural damage to the road itself, making it unsafe to drive on.

“When police barricade a road, it means it is not for use,” Hastings said. “You put yourself at great risk. So, not only do police have to waste precious resources to put the barricades up again, you might find that there is a lot of high water rescues. People were caught off guard by how quickly the water was rising in such a short period of time.”

Hastings said the best thing to do is stay off the roads or pull over on a hill or at the highest ground possible.

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