RECAP: Oklahoma flooding and tornadoes

Collaborator: Brittany Harlow
Published: 05/25/2019, 2:40 PM
Edited: 03/11/2021, 10:22 AM
Photo Courtesy: Oklahoma Highway Patrol/Skiatook, Oklahoma   (TULSA, Okla.) It’s been a week of historic flooding after Oklahoma’s most recent tornado outbreak.   Flooding   The Tulsa area, along with other areas statewide, continued to experience flooding into the weekend. Tulsa County, including hard hit areas like Bixby, Jenks and Sand Springs, and Muskogee County in particular are faced with loads of problems resulting from overflow from the Arkansas River. More than 1,500 residents in Tulsa County alone have been impacted thus far.     Tulsa has opted for a “prepare for the worst and hope for the best” approach to handling the flooding, using the 1986 flood as a guidebook on how to best protect and serve its city.   The Army Corps of Engineers announced it will continue the current discharge rate of 250,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) from the Keystone Dam until at least Wednesday. Officials said Tulsa County residents should begin to prepare for a possible voluntary evacuation and remain vigilant to this evolving situation. The area of concern: Levee A, south of the Keystone Expressway/Hwy412, east of River City Park Rd. and west of 65th W. Ave. For residents that live near Levee B, between 65th W. Ave. to Newblock Park and south of Keystone Expressway/Hwy412. Go to for maps.   For more Tulsa Area Emergency Management updates visit:   For Broken Arrow updates visit:   Oklahoma Highway Patrol had to perform several water rescues from affected homes, especially in the Skiatook area, but thanks in part to voluntary evacuations that number decreased towards the end of the week.   Ongoing problems   Law enforcement, the Army National Guard and public officials continue to work around the clock to keep Oklahomans safe. Residents can help themselves by staying out of floodwater and being mindful of possible power outages and gas shut offs in homes and businesses along the Arkansas River.   Floodwater poses a number of risks including but not limited to bacteria, raw sewage, hazardous waste, electric currents, sharp objects and snakes.   You can find more information on how to stay safe from floodwater here:   A number of towns have also had problems with sandbag sellers, in which people have taken the free sandbags offered by their local municipalities and attempted to sell them online to make a profit. Law enforcement asked anyone with information about who is doing this to give them a call.        Tornadoes   In addition to dealing with flooded communities and roads, Oklahomans are also tasked with cleaning up and rebuilding after dozens of tornadoes touched down ‪Monday through Friday‬. Thirty-one tornadoes were reported across the state during that five-day period.   That brings the state’s tornado count up to 66 for the year. Many areas affected by this week’s storms were still recovering from a tornado outbreak April into May, in which 25 tornadoes were recorded statewide during a two-day period.   The facts about the tornadoes recorded during this latest outbreak are as follows:   Wednesday (15)   ‪4:29 p.m.  1 N Cromwell / Seminole County (OUN)‬ ‪4:34 p.m.  7 W Okemah / Okfuskee County (TSA)‬ ‪5:10 p.m.  Okfuskee / Okfuskee County (TSA)‬ ‪5:23 p.m.  3 E Okemah / Okfuskee County (TSA)‬ ‪6:03 p.m.  3 E Okmulgee / Okmulgee County (TSA)‬ ‪6:09 p.m.  3 E Sperry / Tulsa County brief touchdown (TSA)‬ ‪6:37 p.m.  2 NE Haskell / Muskogee County brief touchdown (TSA)‬ ‪6:54 p.m.  5 SW Welch / Craig County (TSA)‬ ‪7:26 p.m.  2 SE Catoosa / Rogers County / Vicinity of Creek Turnpike and Highway 412 (TSA)‬ ‪7:28 p.m.  3 NNW Commerce / Ottawa County large tornado confirmed by spotter (TSA)‬ ‪8:15 p.m.  1 N Pryor / Mayes County (TSA)‬ ‪8:28 p.m.  2 W Hominy / Osage County / multiple vortex (TSA)‬ ‪8:45 p.m.  2 NW Locust Grove / Mayes County / in the industrial park/power plant area (TSA)‬ ‪8:58 p.m.  1 E Salina / Mayes County / cone tornado (TSA)‬ ‪9:37 p.m.  1 N Jay / Delaware County / tornado crossed Highway 59 (TSA)‬   Thursday (4) ‪12:57 a.m.  1 W Bernice / Delaware County (TSA)‬ ‪4:36 p.m. 4 NE Bryans Corner / Beaver County (AMA)‬ ‪8:51 p.m.  6 E Slapout / Beaver County (AMA)‬ ‪8:52 p.m.  7 SW Laverne / Harper County (OUN)‬   Friday (1)   ‪6:37 p.m. 2 S Blair / Jackson County (OUN)‬   You can read more about the other two outbreaks here and here   More rainfall and severe weather are expected next week.  


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