OSAWATOMIE – Miami County is in a flash flood watch until 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17, and the Marais des Cygnes River was expected to experience minor flooding by late Saturday afternoon, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

Thunderstorms, bringing torrential rain to portions of eastern Kansas and northern Missouri were expected to continue into the mid to late morning hours Saturday. The NWS said these storms are producing high rainfall rates which combined with saturated soils might lead to flash flooding.

In addition to the flash flood watch for Miami County – which includes the cities of Osawatomie, Paola and Louisburg – NWS has issued a Marais des Cygnes River flood warning for the communities of Osawatomie and La Cygne that will remain in effect until Monday afternoon.

The river is forecast to rise above minor flood stage of 28 feet at Osawatomie by late Saturday afternoon and crest near 30.6 feet early Sunday morning, according to a NWS forecast issued early Saturday morning. The river forecast could fluctuate.

Though the river is not expected to rise to a level that would require the city of Osawatomie to deploy stop logs at railroad tracks or close floodgates, it could cause some flooding in low-lying areas.

The NWS advises motorists should not drive through flowing water. Nearly half of all flood fatalities are vehicle related, according to the weather service. NWS reports that as little as 6 inches of water can cause a driver to lose control of a vehicle, and 2 feet of water will carry most vehicles away.

News Editor Doug Carder can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or doug.carder@miconews.com.

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