The overnight precipitation will push Illinois River water levels back into the upper range of what is considered “minor” flood stages at the Watts and Chewey gauge stations, and what is the lower range for “moderate” flooding at Tahlequah gauge station, according to d Fite, vice president for GRDA Rivers Operations and Water Quality, in an email.
“There were greater amounts of rainfall than that were forecast within areas of northern Adair County extending east-northeast into the headwaters area of the Illinois River Basin, in northwest Arkansas,” said Fite.
The forecasted crests and times are as follows: Watts gauge, Highway 59 Highway Bridge, 16.7 feet, extreme upper range “minor” flood stage, late Friday evening; Chewey gauge, Hampton bridge, 14.8 feet extreme upper range “minor” flood stage, early Saturday morning; and Tahlequah gauge, Highway 62 bridge, 15.0 feet, lower range “moderate” flood stage, late Saturday afternoon.
The Flint Creek gauge at Highway 412 bridge will see crest at approximately 10.0 feet mid-day Friday, but the level will be below flood stage. The Barren Fork Creek gauge at Highway 51 bridge will see crest at 13.5 feet later Friday. That level will be considerably lesser than minor flood stage of 18.0 feet, according to Fite.