Eyes remain on Neuse River as it approaches major flood stage
Posted April 25
Updated April 26
Raleigh, N.C. — As flood waters drain away from towns upstream Wednesday, all eyes are on the swollen Neuse and Tar rivers.
"Rivers are rising, rivers are flooding in a lot of places or will flood over the next few days," said WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner.
A flood warning remains in effect until 11:30 a.m. Wednesday for Durham, Granville, Wake, Wilson, Edgecombe, Wayne, Johnston, Nash and Franklin counties.
Gardner said the Neuse River is likely to crest today in Smithfield at 24.4 feet, which would cut off access to Hospital and Buffalo roads. It will climb to just over 23 feet this weekend in Goldsboro, which will likely remain under the major flood stage of 24 feet.
"So, moderate flooding (in Goldsboro) with a potential for some major flooding over the weekend," Gardner said.
Rocky Mount officials said the Tar River is estimated to crest Thursday at 2 a.m at a depth of 26.8 feet. Major flood stage in the town is at 25 feet, though the flood water is expected to be lower than that seen during Hurricane Matthew.
The city should be out of moderate flood levels by Friday morning, officials said.
Crabtree Creek in Raleigh crested during the early morning hours Tuesday at about 22 feet, and waters were beginning to recede by 11 a.m.
The creek is usually 75-yards away from Jed Gammon's property, but after days of rain, it swallowed his backyard Tuesday.
"I used to have a lot more fence," he said.
The water from Crabtree Creek also rose about two feet into Gammon's garage.
Gammon has lived near the creek for more than 12 years and said this is not the first time he has experienced flooding.
"Your first one is terrible. Your second one is worse and then, after that, it's kind of like, well it's what happens," Gammon said.
The Tar River in Edgecombe County crested earlier than expected, reaching a maximum of 24.05 feet. Major flood stage for the Tar River is 25 feet, so the worst issues were avoided.
“Hopefully, just like the Tar River in Rocky Mount, (maybe) the crest will happen earlier and not get as high,” WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said.
Normal level for the Neuse River is Smithfield is about 14 feet, but it is forecast to crest at about 24.4 feet late Wednesday, said WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel.
The National Weather Service extended flood warnings for many central North Carolina counties through Wednesday.