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Sunday February 7th, 2016 12:37PM

Chairman, Mayor issue declarations of emergency following S. Hall flooding

By Staff
GAINESVILLE -- Hall County Commission Chairman Dick Mecum along with Mayor Mike Miller of Flowery Branch issued a declaration of local emergency for the southern end of Hall County and Flowery Branch, respectively affected by heavy rains and road closures Sunday.

Mecum issued the formal declaration following notice from the Hall County Emergency Management Agency that emergency circumstances exist in Flowery Branch and south Hall County requiring extraordinary and immediate corrective actions for the protection of the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Hall County.

The formal declaration activates the Hall County Emergency Operations Plan and gives the Chairman emergency authority to use County employees to assist within jurisdictions where an emergency exists and gives them the authority to close affected roadways.

Auhorities strongly encourage residents in the affected area to use caution if outdoors. We also encourage citizens to have a heightened awareness of road closures which will likely result in longer commute times Monday morning.

Hall County Road Maintenance crews responded to the Flowery Branch area early Sunday morning as a result of the significant weather event. Approximately 7.5 inches of rain fell in the area within six hours.

As a result of the heavy rains, portions of Atlanta Highway, McEver Road, Stephens Road, Trudy Drive, Flowery Way, Spring Street and Cove Creek Road have all been closed, according to officials on scene. Hall County Road Maintenance crews as well as an emergency contractor are working diligently to make repairs and construct temporary roads as needed.

In addition, a boil water advisory has been issued for South Hall and Flowery Branch residents south of Highway 53 until further notice. Heavy rains have caused a water main to rupture, leading to the advisory. Every effort is underway to have the problem resolved by midnight.

As of 5pm, Mayor Mike Miller declared a local emergency based on his determination that the flash flooding that occurred within the City threatened the loss of life and property as well as created a major disruption of routine affairs, business and government operations within the city.

Hall County emergency crews mobilized immediately early Sunday morning to assist citizens and secure the flooded areas. Hall County's Citizen's Alert System has been activated to notify residents affected by the closures, and members of the Hall County Marshal's Office were also on hand to assist citizens in the area.

Anyone needing assistance as a result of these road closures is asked to contact Hall County's Emergency Operations Center at 770-718-5737.
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