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State of emergency declared in Jackson, Mississippi, as flood waters rise

By Adriana Navarro, AccuWeather staff writer
May 09, 2019, 5:56:27 PM EDT

After a slow-moving storm moved through the area, Jackson, Mississippi, declared a state of emergency due to flash flooding Thursday afternoon.

Torrential rain in the Greenville, Mississippi, area Thursday morning caused significant flooding of businesses and prompted water rescues. As of 2:40 p.m. CDT, the city had reported 7.25 inches of rain. This is well above the 4.42 inches of rain that the town typically receives in the entire month of May.

Flash Flooding Rankin County

Flood waters swept through Rankin County after a slow-moving storm. (Twitter / @dawgsmack)

By Thursday afternoon, there had been 10 reports of water rescues performed near Hawkins Field Airport. About 4.35 inches of rain have fallen in Jackson, Mississippi in the last 24 hours according to the National Weather Service.

There have been about 22,568 power outages in the state while Texas and Arkansas have had power outages each above 30,000 as of Thursday afternoon.

Flooding occurred in Pearl, Mississippi near after the National Weather Service issued a Flash Flood warning. WJTV 12 reports rising waters along Highway 80.

The flooding breached the campus of the Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, Mississippi.

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"Ya'll going swimming?" someone shouted out of a car as they filmed on their phone a few students looking for a way to cross a completely flooded road.

"I wouldn't go much further that way," one of the students responded as the car rolled through the water that nearly came up to the bottom of a parked compact car.

As little as a foot of running water can be all that it takes to sweep away most cars in a flash flood.

As the storm moved southeast, it brought with it tornado and flash flood warnings from McComb, Mississippi to New Orleans.

The risk of flooding will continue along a portion of the Mississippi River through the week and into June as rounds of excessive rain continue. High water levels combined with drenching rainfall can lead to an increased risk of levee failure.

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