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Nation Guard to assist with Mo. flooding

Gov. Jay Nixon declared state of emergency after heavy rains

August 7, 2013

Heavy thunderstorms early Wednesday hit already saturated areas of south-central Missouri, where one child has been reported killed and a woman remains missing in flooding that has also forced the closure of major highways and some evacuations.

"It was a classic setup," said weather.com senior meteorologist Jon Erdman. "A cluster of thunderstorms fired up overnight over the Show-Me State, parking in place for a sufficient period of time to produce inundating rain in parts of the state."

The National Weather Service said the Gasconade River at Rich Fountain was about 4 feet below flood stage early Wednesday. It was expected to reach its 20 foot flood stage later Wednesday and rise to nearly 32 feet early Thursday, depending on how much more rain hits the area.

Gov. Jay Nixon on Wednesday ordered the deployment of 50 military policemen of the Missouri National Guard to help local authorities dealing with flooding. Nixon declared a state of emergency Tuesday after heavy rains caused flash flooding and at least one confirmed death in the Waynesville area.

A 4-year-old boy was killed and several homes and businesses damaged after heavy rains fell in the south-central town of Waynesville on Monday night and Tuesday morning. Sgt. Dan Crain, spokesman for the Missouri State Highway Patrol in Rolla, said the search for a missing woman who is believed to be the child’s mother will resume as soon as conditions allow. Water levels were too high and currents too swift to continue the search early Wednesday.

About a dozen homes were evacuated early Wednesday in Newburg, a Phelps County town of about 45o residents near the Little Piney River. Laura Johnson, supervisor with the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department, said a 12-foot section of a county road washed away Wednesday morning. No injuries were reported.

The National Weather service also issued flood warning Wednesday for several southwestern Missouri counties, including Laclede and Wright counties, where several low-water crossings were also flooding after about 2 inches of rain fell in that region by early Wednesday.

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