COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - UPDATE: 3/11/19 5:50 P.M.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has declared a state of emergency in Washington and 19 other counties in the wake of heavy rain and flooding last month.
Other counties on the list include: Adams, Athens, Brown, Gallia, Guernsey, Hocking, Jackson, Jefferson, Lawrence, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble, Perry, Pike, Ross, Scioto and Vinton.
In a news release, DeWine's office said many of the counties were still recovering from severe flooding a year ago when high water hit again between Feb. 5 and 13.
Representatives from FEMA and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency will be meeting with county and township officials in each of the 20 counties this week to assess the extent of damages.
“This is a key step in getting these 20 counties the assistance they need,” DeWine said.
The declaration authorizes various state departments and agencies to coordinate the state and federal response and to help local government “in protecting the lives, safety, health, and property of the residents of Ohio.”
Representatives from FEMA and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency will be meeting with county and township officials in each of the 20 counties this week to assess the extent of damages in a process called a “joint damage assessment.”
Heavy rains and severe storms in February 2018 led to an emergency proclamation and a presidential disaster in 20 Ohio counties, 14 of which are included in the declaration DeWine announced on Monday.
ORIGINAL STORY: 2/2018
Concerns about continued flooding and forecasts of more rain have prompted Ohio Gov. John Kasich (KAY-sik) to issue an emergency declaration for 17 counties in the southern and eastern parts of the state.
The declaration made Saturday afternoon allows for the National Guard to be activated if needed.
Counties included in the declaration are Adams, Athens, Belmont, Brown, Clermont, Columbiana, Gallia, Hamilton, Hocking, Jackson, Jefferson, Lawrence, Monroe, Meigs, Muskingum, Scioto and Washington.
The National Weather Service says between 1 and 2 inches of rain is forecast beginning Saturday night into Sunday morning.
Meteorologist Andy Hatzos says the Ohio River at Cincinnati is expected to crest at 59.5 feet (18.1 meters) Monday morning. Saturday afternoon the river reached 57 feet (17.4 meters), well above the 52-foot (15.9-meter) flood stage.
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