LUMBERTON — The Lumber River has begun descending, but is expected to remain above flood stage for at least a few more days.
As of late Monday, the river was at 19.2 feet, according to Rob Armstrong, the City of Lumberton’s Public Works Director. The river crested at 21.0 feet over the weekend, he said.
Rain showers Monday afternoon were not anticipated to have any adverse effect on river levels, Armstrong said.
“(It’s) pretty stable at this point, despite the little bit of rain that we’re getting (Monday afternoon),” Armstrong said. “The river is slowly, slowly dropping. So we’re down to about 19.2 (feet) or so, and I imagine that, according to the forecast from the National Weather Service, the river will kind of do a flatline here and not drop a whole lot more until another 24 hours after this rain moves out, but it’s not expected to rise.”
The flood warning for Lumberton issued by the National Weather Service still continues “until further notice.” In its advisory Monday afternoon, the NWS said the river was expected to fall to 16.3 feet by Saturday morning. Flood stage is 13.0 feet.
No new areas have flooded since Friday, Armstrong said, and some roads around the Public Works Department on Cedar Street have now become passable as of Monday afternoon.
Noir Street and the surrounding area, just south of downtown Lumberton, is expected to remain impassable for the next three or four days.
“It looks like the river is going to drop below major flood level sometime midweek or so, and if it continues to drop like that then those roads should open back up,” Armstrong said.
A small section of Water Street in downtown is also closed as of late Monday.
A back valve under Interstate 95 just north of the McDonald’s on West Fifth Street was “not functioning real well,” but Public Works has resolved that situation, Armstrong said.
“Most of our canals now, with the river, have gone down, so they’re within their banks and should have hydraulic capacity to move water that may need to be handled or conveyed from this little bit of rain that we’re getting (Monday afternoon),” Armstrong said. “But it really is not very eventful right now.”
Chris Stiles can be reached at 910-816-1977 or by email at [email protected]