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2020 is definitely going out with a bang in East Texas in the weather department.

Rain and thunderstorms are in the forecast for our New Year's Eve thanks to a cold front moving through East Texas. These off and on again thunderstorms could be dropping heavy rainfall amounts at times and could cause flash flooding. Most of East Texas is under a Flash Flood Watch because we could see as much as three to six inches of rainfall over the next 36 hours, according to the National Weather Service.

National Weather Service
National Weather Service

With all this rain there's a chance the some roads could become impassible due to water flowing across them. If you encounter a flooded roadway always remember to TURN AROUND, DON'T DROWN. TxDOT reminds us that flash flooding is the leading cause of weather related deaths in Texas. If you encounter a flooded roadway, TxDOT reminds us of the following:

  • Never walk, swim, or drive through still or moving flood waters. The water may be hiding dangers such as debris, tree branches, power lines, or damage to the road. As little as six inches of fast-moving water can cause motorists to lose control of their vehicle, even a pickup truck or SUV.
  • Stay informed about weather conditions when you are driving.
  • Be especially careful driving at night when it can be harder to see flood dangers.
  • If your vehicle stalls in deep water, leave it and move to higher ground if you can do so safely.

TxDOT is also preparing some roadways for the potential of winter type weather north of the I-20 corridor. Crews across an eight county area have already pre-treated some roadways. According to TxDOT's Kathi White,

I-20 and other major roadways have been pre-treated with a brine solution consisting of salt and water designed to prevent ice and snow from sticking to surfaces. The process is a fast-moving mobile operation with minimal impacts to traffic. The district is also preparing for potential flooding and will be monitoring areas of concern throughout the life of the storm.

Coordination efforts with local municipalities and law enforcement are also underway. TXDOT works closely with the National Weather Service to have the best available information preparing for a winter weather storm.

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