State of Emergency Extended in Oklahoma

December 30, 2015

Gov. Mary Fallin is extending a state of emergency to all 77 Oklahoma counties after another winter storm brought ice to western and central parts of the state and heavy flooding in the east and northeast.

Fallin issued an executive order extending a state of emergency originally declared after a winter storm battered the state last month. The order extends the state of emergency for another 30 days and allows state agencies to make emergency purchases for disaster relief.

Fallin issued a second executive order that temporarily suspends size and weight permits for oversized vehicles transporting supplies and materials for storm relief.

The storm brought ice and freezing rain across much of western, central and northern Oklahoma, and heavy flooding to the east.

Emergency responders in northeastern Oklahoma say heavy rainfall and extreme flooding have made conditions along the Illinois River extremely dangerous.

Ed Fite, with the Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission, says “widespread, catastrophic” damage has been caused to property and roads located near the river.

Fite says water levels at Watts, Chewey and at the Tahlequah gauge sites had either reached record flood stages or had crested by Monday afternoon.

The commission says residents shouldn’t drive within the basin after dark. It’s also warning drivers not to go through any roadway that’s covered with water.

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