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Flooding potential in West Alabama Keeps EMA directors on alert

Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 4:47 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 8, 2022 at 4:48 PM CDT
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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - We are keeping a close eye on the weather for you. The threat of storms is expected to increase after 6:00 p.m. on June 8, and our team of meteorologists are not the only ones scanning the radar. Regional EMA directors are as well.

Tuscaloosa County has a population of more than 200,000 people, and that’s a number Nick Lolley keeps in mind long before bad weather arrives.

Late Wednesday morning it was humid, hot and starting to get cloudy outside the Tuscaloosa County EMA office, and this is a time when EMA directors like Lolley begin to bear down and get focused on what may or may not happen. The very thing on the forefront of his mind? That 200,000 plus number.

“It only takes one to April 27, whether it’s flooding or tornado... whatever it is, it just takes one event with your family and your home that you’ve worked hard for all your life. We have over 200,000 citizens in this county and every one of them matter,” Lolley said.

Lolley has been around long enough that he never takes the threat of bad weather for granted, and neither should we, no matter how it shows up. This week we’ve seen flash flooding near Birmingham, and that brings an oft-repeated mantra in mind but one that’s worth repeating over and over again.

“And the old saying goes and we say it every time...turn around, don’t drown. Not only are you putting yourself [in danger], but we saw yesterday a police officer went out and risked his life to save somebody and that’s what they do everyday, so don’t put yourself or the first responders in a position you don’t need to be in and they need to be in,” he said.

Until then, Lolley says the county is prepared... and now the waiting begins.

In terms of the possibility of flooding in Tuscaloosa County, Lolley estimates there anywhere from five to 10 areas of potential concern, so the key here is to be vigilant.

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