- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 27, 2014

WARNER, Okla. (AP) - As rain fell across Oklahoma Tuesday, communities are cleaning up from weekend flooding and monitoring forecasts calling for more rainfall throughout the week.

Ft. Gibson emergency manager Larry Dale Cooper says the town recorded more than 3 inches of rain in one hour Monday, causing flooding on a number of roadways, -including state Highway 10. Cooper says several roads were impassable and a car was flooded on Highway 10.

Residents in Warner were also evacuated Monday as flooding blocked streets near creeks and flooded buildings, including one apartment complex.

About 40 people were forced from their homes Monday evening when about 4 inches of rain fell and water started racing through the area, a Warner emergency management official said. The American Red Cross is assisting the flood victims.

Jeff Smith, emergency manager for Muskogee County where both Warner and Ft. Gibson are located, said Monday was a unique situation because of the large amount of rainfall the area received in such a short time.

“The water runoff systems were just not capable of handling that amount of water,” Smith said. “The great thing about flash flooding, though, if you can say something is good, is that it goes away pretty quickly.”

Smith said he had been out with crews since 5:30 a.m. working to patch roads and repair driveways and bridges that had washed out due to the rain.

“As long as it maintains a steady slow rain like we’re getting right now we should be OK,” Smith said. “If for some reason these rain showers should increase to heavy downpours, with us getting more than an inch an hour, that would start causing us problems.”

Smith said crews were making temporary fixes in many areas because of the continued rainfall.

Rain is expected to continue throughout the week, according to the National Weather Service.

“The main thing I’ve been telling people is turn around, don’t drown,” Smith said. “If you can’t see the road, there’s no guarantee there’s a road there.”

The U.S. Drought Monitor reports that nearly three-fourths of the state was in a severe to extreme drought as of May 20, up nearly 25 percent from the same period last year.

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Information from: Muskogee Phoenix, http://www.muskogeephoenix.com