Strong storms and heavy rains that rolled through western Kentucky late Monday night and into Tuesday morning caused multiple issues around Hopkins County — including power outages, flooded roadways and the cancellation of in-person school.
Hopkins County Schools Assistant Superintendent Amy Smith said the school system decided to have students work from home because of several areas in the county that were flooded.
“The entrance to Southside Elementary and the exit were underwater Tuesday morning when we made the decision,” she said. “We also had a school — West Hopkins — that was without power.”
While the flooding and power outage at the schools were problems, there were other factors involved, she said. The forecast Tuesday morning showed it was supposed to rain again when school dismissed, and officials didn’t want to put the students, teachers and bus drivers through unsafe conditions.
Today is an NTI day for students anyway, so it was just Tuesday they were worried about. Smith said they are crossing their fingers that school will resume as normal on Thursday.
Michael York, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Paducah, said on average Hopkins County had one to three inches of rain in the area.
“It is typical for spring, a lot of times we have storms that produce localized flash flooding,” he said.
Hopkins County Emergency Management Director Nick Bailey said at the office in Madisonville, they registered just over two inches of rain.
“For the most part, we fared pretty well in the county,” he said.
There were a few trees down in the county, but nothing serious was damaged, he said. Wind gusts were about 30 miles an hour during the storm.
“It was not to the extreme we were expecting,” said Bailey. “For the most part, we had a pretty uneventful evening and early morning.”
Keirsten Jaggers, with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for District 2, said several roads were impacted because of the rains. She said highway’s 502, 281, 1033 and 2647 were now open, but had high water as of Tuesday afternoon.
Highway U.S. 62 near Nortonville remained closed Tuesday night.
“Please do not drive through flooded sections of roads,” she said.
While the storm was not as bad as expected, there were still numerous power outages in the county.
Leslie Barr, communications and public relations specialist for Kenergy Corp — which powers parts of the county — said they had approximately 411 households affected by power outages locall.
Power was restored to all the residences by 10 a.m. on Tuesday, said Barr.
“Thankfully our crews worked quickly overnight and in the morning to get them back on,” she said.
Forecasts for the remainder of the week call for relatively calm skies and mild temperatures, according to York. Today’s forecast includes sunny skies with a high of 66. There is a small chance of showers on Thursday with a high of 69, and Friday looks like it will be sunny with a high near 70.