A dangerous flooding situation in northeastern Arkansas worsened on Wednesday morning when a levee failed along the Black River near the town of Pocahontas.
The National Weather Service office in Memphis issued a flash flooding emergency and urged residents to seek higher ground immediately due to life-threatening flooding.
Water rescues were occurring just south of Pocahontas in the community of Shannon, according to the NWS.
Evacuation orders were issued on Monday for eastern Pocahontas, which included 150 homes, dozens of businesses and an assisted living facility, according to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Water had begun to spill over the top of the levee on Tuesday, and officials warned of an imminent levee breach.
Gauge data shows the river crested at a record level of 28.95 feet at 8:30 p.m. local time Tuesday, but it is forecast to remain above the major flood stage of 25 feet through early Saturday morning.
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Days of heavy rain have resulted in the record crests of numerous rivers across the central United States.
"A general 4-8 inches of rain fell, while some locations received 10 inches of rain in part of the Central states," according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.
At least seven people have been killed due to the severe storms and heavy flooding in Arkansas since last weekend.
Black River floodwaters have covered State Highway 37 between Cord and Tuckerman. #arwx #artraffic #arnews pic.twitter.com/4DDCsWAvQE
— AHTD (@AHTD) May 3, 2017