COTTON COUNTY, Okla._Cotton County was in the bull’s-eye when the storm clouds unleashed the downpour.
Emergency management officials in Cotton County reported as much as 12 inches of standing water along State Highway 5 and other county roads. The sheriff's department was also called out to rescue a couple of people whose car had been knocked off the road by the floodwater. The damage didn't stop there as the storm knocked out power to several hundred homes. Emergency crews were working around the clock Thursday to get the electricity flowing again.
Farmers certainly enjoyed the rain but the amount they received caused a headache not only for them, but for emergency officials and Cotton Electric Co-Op.
From mile marker 14 to mile marker 18 on State Highway 5, Cotton Electric Co-Op worked from early morning through the evening to repair 35 downed power poles. They said that 415 homes were without power but before most people were awake, their power had been restored. They said they were lucky it was this line of poles that were knocked down because they could easily reroute the power to the homes that needed it.
Rainwater used to cover the highway, but by that afternoon it was safe to drive back and forth. Cotton County Sheriff Kent Simpson said there was as much as a foot and a half of water covering the road.
"People don't realize how dangerous it is to drive into running water," said Sheriff Simpson.
Two men found out exactly how dangerous it was when their Ford Mustang was swept off the road. Sheriff Simpson said that if it wasn't for the fence, the car could have easily been swept farther. Cotton County officials said when they got on scene the car was nearly submerged and the two men taking refuge on top of the care waiting to be rescued.
"I would imagine that the young gentlemen were probably driving a little bit too quick. I would say it was probably raining pretty good so they couldn't see the highway and they drove into the flood water. It's something people really do commonly, it's really bad. It turned out really good that these individuals didn't lose their life," said Sheriff Simpson.
Cotton County officials said they have about three weeks of work ahead of them. All in all, four and a half miles of road were washed out and seven roads are currently closed.