De Valls Bluff Family Builds Moat to Protect Home from Floods


De Valls Bluff, Ark. –One Central Arkansas family is going to extreme lengths to protect their home from flooding, by building a moat.

Bryan Petty stands on top of dry ground behind his De Valls Bluff home. “When i brought the house, I had not expected it to do this again,” he says. Petty didn’t just hope high waters would stay away, he planned for it. “With the flooding a lot of the water was coming up and we had to do something to save the house,” says Petty.

Homeowners say it took about a day and a half to build the levee, which wraps around this entire property. It sits at 4 ft. high. He says his family – with help from the community – dug their first levee when the White River hit a high of 39 feet.

“In 2011, we built this in the midst of the floods, we were sandbagging and we built a smaller levee and we had to come back and add to the levee,” he says. The White River has flooded nearby homes in the small town, with about a foot of water already surrounding some parts of Petty’s home.”From looking at it it’s come up, I don’t know where exactly it would be in the yard right now but it would come up to the back door.”

Petty says he’s able to sleep comfortably, knowing he’s done his part to protect his family home from floods. “With this levee, we got in here early,” he says. “It’s wider, it’s stronger, i think enough to keep us safe.”

Petty says the home has been in his family for years and he has no plans to move. The White River is expected to crest by Wednesday .

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