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Yocona River Causing Flooding in Oxford Area

Story contributed by broadcast journalism students Ashley Muller, Maddy Bierster and Jyesha Johnson.

One of the most flooded areas in Lafayette County right now is along Yocona River, which is at a record high.

Parents of one local woman trudged along a flooded driveway up to their knees, to check on her home. They said this is the first time they’ve seen anything like this.

“Not since 1955 since we’ve had one this bad,” said mother Becky Babb.

At County Road 328, the Yocona River has overflowed onto fields and streets, closing some down. MDOT is cautioning residents about driving in these hazardous conditions. 

All of this flooding has opened up potholes around the city and across the state of Mississippi. For example, there is one large hole on South Lamar that MDOT and UPD are working to fix in order to hide any exposed electrical wires. Another example can be seen on Interstate 55 near Grenada around Papermill Road.

Oxford residents are worried about their homes and businesses. One business owner says he doesn’t know how long this will take to fix.

“I’m just praying it doesn’t get up in those there, because I can’t get in touch with all of my tenants here,” said Mike Williamson.

What used to be his farming land surrounding his storage facility is now completely submerged by water. This will require a lot of clean-up and extra work prior to farming season, he said. He’s concerned this flooding will affect his farming business.

“I have three irrigation pumps that are not designed to go underwater, they’re all underwater right now.”

With the Yocona River at a record high of 28.54 feet, WTVA Meteorologist Matt Laubhan says he expects the conditions to improve.

“The Yocona River is reaching historic, record levels and is expected to crest, which means reach its peak height of flood stage within the remainder of Saturday,” he said. “By Sunday levels should be coming down.”

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