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Justice adds counties to state of emergency; DOH says dozens of secondary roads remain closed from flooding heading into weekend

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Jim Justice has added 14 counties to his original state of emergency issued after tornadoes and flooding hit the state last week.

The counties added Friday are connected to Thursday night flooding.

Joe Pack

The new counties include Boone, Braxton, Calhoun, Doddridge, Gilmer, Harrison, Jackson, Logan, Mingo, Ritchie, Roane, Tyler, Wayne and Wirt.

There are now 26 of the state’s 55 counties under the state of emergency since the weather first started to hit on April 2.

A state of emergency generally clears red tape and allows for a smoother response to emergencies.

Meanwhile, the state Division of Highways says it will continue to assess and clean-up damage on its roadways across the state following the heavy rainfall that hit many counties Thursday night into Friday morning.

The DOH said that as of mid-afternoon Friday there remained 58 roads closed. Most of the closures were in Kanawha, Cabell, Jackson, Clay, Mason, Lincoln, Pleasants, Wood, Doddridge, Harrison, Marion, Monongalia, Morgan, Brooke, Marshall, Ohio, Tyler, and Wetzel counties.

DOH Chief Engineer of Operations Joe Pack said the rain came down hard and fast mostly north of Interstate 64.

“Such large amounts of rainfall are bound to cause flooding,” Pack said in a DOH news release. “In West Virginia, it’s not the volume of the water but the velocity that causes damage to roads.”

Pack said DOH workers cleared a drain by hand on I-64 near the state capitol Thursday night to allow standing water to drain. He said work Friday focused on removing downed trees, rocks and mud from the state’s highways. Many roads are still flooded. DOH crews will have to wait until the water goes down before their work can begin, Pack said.

Pack said there would have been more significant damage had not the agency stepped up its core maintenance efforts over the last few years.

“Water is our enemy,” Pack said. “Anything we can do to keep water away from our roadways is going to extend the life of our pavement.”

Roads closed at 2 p.m. Friday included:

Kanawha, Shale Road, culvert washed out.
Kanawha, Kanawha Two Mile Creek, culvert washed out.
Kanawha, WV 622, milepost 9.30, high water.
Kanawha, Holmes Branch Road, culvert washed out.
Kanawha, Sissonville Drive at Haines Branch, high water.
Kanawha, WV 214 at Willow Drive, tree and power lines in the road.
Kanawha, Frame Road, milepost 4.5, tree in road.
Clay, WV 16 at Hartland Bridge, high water.
Mason, Salt Creek Road, high water.
Cabell, Two Mile Creek at East Mud River Road, high water.
Cabell, Goose Creek Road, high water.
Cabell, Dry Creek Road, milepost 4.796, high water.
Cabell, West Mud River Road, milepost 0.01 to 0.40, high water.
Lincoln, Coal River Road, milepost 7, culvert washed out.
Jackson, Trace Fork Road, high water.
Jacskon, Middle Fork Road, milepost 7.05, high water.
Jackson, Homer Smith Road, high water.
Jackston, Lower Parchment Valley, high water.
Jackson, Liverpool Road, high water.
Pleasants, Middle Island, milepost 0.00 to 2.00, high water.
Ritchie, County Route 19, high water.
Ritchie, Prunty Road, high water.
Ritchie, WV 47, high water.
Ritchie, Cisco Road, high water.
Wirt, Fish Hatchery Road, high water.
Wirt, Burning Springs Road, high water.
Wirt, Sonoma Road, high water.
Wood, Walker Road, high water.
Wood, Stilwell Road, high water.
Wood, Nicolette Road, high water.
Doddridge, WV 18, milepost 18.78 and milepost 19.27, high water.
Marion, Lick Run Road, mudslide.
Monongalia, River Road, rock fall.
Morgan, Powerhouse Road low water bridge, high water.
Brooke, WV 67 at Pennsylvania state line, high water.
Brooke, Camp Run, high water.
Brooke, Castlemans Run, high water.
Marshall, Beelers Station Road, high water.
Marshall, Big Wheeling Creek Road, high water.
Marshall, Fish Creek in Lower End, high water.
Marshall, Dry Ridge Road, high water.
Marshall, Little Grave Creek, high water.
Marshall, US 250 at Cameron, high water.
Marshall, WV 2 at Long Run, high water.
Marshall, Bells Hill, high water.
Ohio, Peters Run Road at Skipper Lane, high water.
Tyler, WV 18, high water.
Tyler, Indian Creek Road, high water.
Tyler, Big Run Road, high water.
Tyler, McElroy Creek, high water.
Tyler, Sellers Road, high water.
Wetzel, Van Camp-Paden Fork Road, high water.
Wetzel, Mannington Road, high water.
Wetzel, Cappo Run, high water.
Wetzel, WV 2 at WV 7, high water.
Wetzel, WV 20 at Folsom, high water.
Randolph, 1876 Rich Mountain Road, lines down in road.

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