Heavy rains cause severe flooding in southwest Virginia counties

Posted at 6:23 PM, Feb 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-11 18:39:52-05

BIG STONE GAP, Va. -- Heavy rainfall caused severe flooding and closed roads in several southwest Virginia counties Sunday.

The Big Stone Gap Fire Department said it had to conduct several rescues late Saturday night and that they called in the Bristol Swift Water Rescue Team and the Appalachia Swift Water Rescue Team for backup.

More than 30 roads throughout the area were shut down, WYCB reported.

Wise County opened up five shelters for people who had to evacuate their homes.

Officials said no injuries have been reported yet.

Additionally, both lanes of a stretch of Highway 421 in the Stone Creek area of Lee County was closed from a mudslide.

Lee County Sheriff Gary Parsons told WYCB there is no way to get around the damage, which is near the north fork of the Powell River.

Virginia State Police urged drivers to watch out for flooded highways and debris.

"The weekend's rains are impacting many rural routes in Lee County, Virginia, Wise County, Virginia Visit Buchanan County VA & Visit Dickenson County VA. Remember...if you encounter standing water and/or a flooded roadway - Turn Around. Don't Drown," officials posted.

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