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Heavy Rains Shutdown I-40; Flash Flood Warning Expires

Heavy rain across central North Carolina has caused some road flooding and forecasters are warning that conditions could bring more flooding to the region.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch Tuesday from Winston-Salem to Rocky Mount, saying there's a chance of swelling streams and flooded roads until 6 p.m.

The weather service says radar estimates indicate that more than 3 inches of rain have fallen across much of Wake County, leading to minor road flooding. Water accumulated on roadways across the region.

Forecasters said showers will continue to develop across central North Carolina throughout the day.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


The D.O.T. warns drivers to take extra precautions because of the threat of flooding. Here are some tips:

· Avoid driving through flooded areas, even if they seem shallow. Just one foot of water can float many vehicles, while two feet of rushing water can carry away SUVs and pick-ups;

· After driving through a puddle, tap your brake pedal to help dry your brake rotors;

· If your car starts to hydroplane, take your foot off the gas, apply the brakes in a steady, slightly firm manner without stomping and steer in the direction of the skid. If you have a manual transmission, push in the clutch and let the car slow down on its own;

· If the rain is extremely heavy, pull over in a safe area in a parking lot or on the roadside with your emergency flashers on, away from any trees or other tall objects, and wait for the weather to improve;

· Allow more travel time;

· Turn on your low beam headlights and use the defroster to increase visibility;

· If possible, stay in the middle lane where the road tends to be higher;

· Reduce your speed by at least five to 10 miles per hour and allow at least twice the normal following distance;

· Signal for turns ahead of time and brake early as you near a stop. Remember, roads are slickest in the first 10 to 15 minutes, especially if it has not rained for a while; and

· If a traffic signal is knocked out by a storm, regard the intersection as a four-way stop. If two or more vehicles arrive at the same time, the car to the right has the right of way and after signaling, may move in any direction. If two facing vehicles approach the intersection at the same time, any car traveling straight ahead or turning right has the right of way.


When severe weather strikes, stay tuned to WITN for the latest from Advanced VIPIR. Chief Meteorologist Marvin Daugherty and meteorologists Jim Howard, Bob Trihy and Greg Armbrecht will work around the clock to give you the latest information and any warnings.

You can also tune into WITN's 24/7 weather channel. You can watch it over the air on 7.2, on Suddenlink Digital Cable Channel 167 and Time Warner Digital Cable on Channel 931.

Also, don't forget to download First Alert Weather for Your Desktop, absolutely free! Click here to download WITN’s First Alert.

If you have storm photos, please submit them to WITN's Carolina Camera.


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