MABSCOTT, WV (WVNS) — Raleigh County officials and residents are bracing for flooding in Mabscott and Cabell Bottom if the area receives an anticipated one to two inches of rain this coming weekend.
Raleigh Commission President Dave Tolliver said construction on Harper Road is causing additional run-off to flow into Whitestick Creek, which runs through the town of Mabscott, which is at a lower elevation than Harper Road.
“All of the water up there comes down through here, through these pipes, and ends up in Whitestick,” said Tolliver. “That’s why we have flooding down in lower Cabell Bottom. That’s why Mabscott gets flooded, every time there’s a big rain.”
Diana Lockhart, whose Mabscott yard backs Whitestick, said she and her neighbors see more water since construction started.
“We’re getting a lot more water from the Turnpike,” Lockhart said. “I mean, when you’re coming through here, on Wickman Road, the water’s just gushing down off here. Where else is it going to go? Mabscott.”
Tolliver, County Engineer Detlef Ulfers, and County Administrator Jay Quenseberry said a short-term solution is to dredge Whitestick Creek. Tolliver said the county asked the West Virginia Conservation Agency, which oversees soil conservation and erosion in the state, to dredge Whitestick.
Some property owners spend their own money to dredge parts of the creek. But much of it is overgrown with vegetation and obstructed by sediment, which causes it to overflow.
Ulfers said the stormwater management plan developed by Beckley Sanitary Board aims to regulate concrete paving on Harper Road. In the long-term, the practices will reduce stormwater run-off into Whitestick Creek and help reduce flooding on Mabscott and Cabell Bottom residents.
“They don’t manage Mabscott. I mean, this is separate from their area,” added Ulfers. “But they’re upstream from this area. So what they do affects this area.”