Jackson County deputies conduct several water rescues in connection to flooding

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NEWPORT, Ark. -- The floods in Arkansas are causing thousands of dollars worth of damage and putting people out of their homes.

WREG's been covering the recent shut downs in Pocahontas, which is seeing record flooding. The flooding there is starting to plateau, but the overflowing river water is now heading down the state to areas like Jackson County.

“That’s all you could see was swirling water and it’s very dangerous," said Captain Ricky Morales with the Jackson County Sheriff's Office.

Captain Morales told us a real life example of the dangers of flooding.

“We had to launch our boat in a ditch alongside the highway to get where he was.”

He’s talking about the driver in a big rig on Highway 37. He says the driver decided to ignore closure signs on the road on Thursday and ended up submerged in flood water with his 18-wheeler.

“When we got to him, he was out of the truck, hankered down to a tree. I mean obviously, he was scared.”

But he wasn’t the only one to make that risky decision.

Six highways are shut down in the county and deputies responded to several water rescues this afternoon of cars being swept up in the current.

“It’s very dangerous. Like I said, once that water gets across those roads, there’s a current and it is very powerful.”

There’s was plenty of flooding across the county in Jacksonport as well where the state park was under water.

State park leaders says the river’s overflow is taking up 80 percent of the park that’s usually there for enjoyment.

“We have fishing and camping and picnicking," said Park Superintendent Mark Ballard.

But right now all they have is a mess.

“We’ve experienced it many times, but not to this extent except twice," said Ballard.

He expects tens of thousands of dollars worth of damage, but is happy it isn’t causing any lives lost.

Volunteer pilots are flying through the area to make sure the levies don’t get compromised by the flooding. The Newport Fire Department also has crews on the ground monitoring the situation.