The National Weather Service in Little Rock is warning of major flooding along the Arkansas River in Pine Bluff. The river is expected to rise to near 45 feet by Saturday, June 1.
Flood stage is 42 feet.
The prediction is based off of water from reservoir releases upstream in Oklahoma, where heavy flooding is already occurring.
FAST FACTSImpacts at 42.0 feet: Regional Park flooded with the gate at Regional Park Road closed. This will prevent access to the AGFC Delta Rivers Nature Center and Harbor Oaks public golf course. Some damage in the lowlands inside the levees in Pine Bluff. Water over Knotts Island Road. Impacts at 43.0 feet: Island Harbour Estates Road is impassible, access by boat only to Island Harbour homes. Knotts Island Road impassible and residents should monitor the river for any additional rises. Impacts at 44.0 feet: Trulock Bay Residential Addition upstream of U.S. Highway 79 Business Bridge is affected. Impacts at 45.0 feet: Levee patrolling begins in Pine Bluff area. Residences in Island Harbour inundated. Flood crested at 45.96 feet in June 2015.
Meanwhile, the Army Corps of Engineers is warning that flows on the Arkansas River are anticipated to exceed the May 1990 flood event flows because of persistent rainfall in Oklahoma, according to a news release.
A small craft advisory was issued April 14. During high flows, strong currents and large debris can threaten the safety of pleasure craft. Small craft advisories are issued when flows exceed 70,000 cubic feet per second.
Flows at Emmett Sanders Lock and Dam at Pine Bluff are 174,000 c.f.s. and are expected to peak Friday, May 31, at 450,000 c.f.s. Flows at Dam 2 near Tichnor are 180,000 c.f.s. are expected to peak Sunday, June 2 at 450,000 c.f.s.
Flows at Trimble Lock and Dam near Fort Smith are 170,000 cubic feet per second and are expected to peak Saturday, May 25, at about 530,000 c.f.s. Flows at Dardanelle Lock and Dam at Russellville are 170,000 c.f.s. and expected to peak Monday, May 27, at about 500,000 c.f.s.
Flows at Toad Suck Lock and Dam at Conway are 165,000 c.f.s. and expected to peak Tuesday, May 28, at about 485,000 c.f.s. Flows at Murray Lock and Dam at Little Rock are 175,000 c.f.s. and expected to peak Wednesday, May 29, at about 475, 000 c.f.s.
The National Weather Service predicts river stages and reminds persons along the Arkansas River to be monitoring their website in order to make decisions about whether to move livestock, equipment and belongings to higher ground.
People in at-risk areas should also stay in contact with local emergency officials.