Missouri Department of Public Safety agencies are preparing for dangerous flash flooding and severe storms forecasted for the Ozarks tonight and this weekend.
The Department says they are sending extra crews to southern Missouri from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Missouri National Guard, the Division of Fire Safety, and the State Emergency Management Agency.
Missouri Task Force 1, which includes a swift water rescue team, has also been staged in southern Missouri, where forecasters say the most rainfall is expected.
The Department of Public Safety says flooding is the leading cause of weather-related deaths in Missouri, and that more than half of people killed by flooding drive into flood waters in their vehicles.
Officials say to especially be careful at night, when it's difficult to see whether or not you're driving into floodwaters.
Missouri State Highway Patrol's Troop D is getting geared up for any assistance needed. On Twitter, Troop D assured followers they were prepared, and mentioned the popular #turnarounddontdrown
Here is a list of safety precautions to take during flash flooding, provided by the Missouri Department of Public Safety:
- When a flash flood warning is issued for your area, or the moment you realize that a flash flood is imminent, act quickly to save yourself. Go to higher ground immediately.
- Do not attempt to cross flowing streams on foot. Even six inches of flowing water can knock you off your feet.
- Never let children play around high water, storm drains, or viaducts.
- Never drive past a barricade closing flooded roads. They are there to protect you.
- Never expect barriers to block off flooded low-water crossings, bridges or roads because flash flood waters often rise so quickly authorities do not have time to respond.
- If your vehicle becomes stuck in rising water, get out quickly and move to higher ground because rapidly rising water may engulf the vehicle and sweep it away.