Authorities Ask Drivers To Avoid Standing Water

With a chance of flash floods in East Texas Friday night the Department of Public Safety is reminding drivers if you see water, turn around.  Authorities say many people think they can just drive right through standing water, but all it takes is a few inches before you can lose control of your car.

Wednesday night, in Ellis County, just south of Dallas, cars had no where to go in 10 inches of rain. Drivers in Corsicana had it's fair share of problems as well.   With possible heavy rains on its way to East Texas, authorities are warning drivers to beware, of water.

"It takes very little water for your car to hydroplane at certain speeds, but if the water gets up to the point where you can't see the bottom of the rubber you are getting into some pretty deep water," said Sergeant Herbert Hayter, Tyler Police Department.  According to the National Weather Service, all it takes is six inches of water to cause loss of control and possible stalling.  At a foot of water, many cars will begin floating, and then at two feet, running water will just carry your car or even an SUV away.

"The best rule of thumb is like I said, if you can't see the road then you need to turn around and find another route," said Hayter. It's advice you want to take for more people die each year in flash flooding then tornados, hurricanes and lightening combined.

"That's one that is the most preventable because in most cases, people see the danger," said Hayter.  They see the water, but they don't realize how deep the water is and they drive through it anyway."   A decision authorities say they hope East Texans don't make, so cars stalled in water doesn't happen here.

Authorities say if you do end up in high water and your car stalls, get out quickly and move to higher ground. The water could still be rising and could sweep your car away.

Molly Reuter, reporting.