YELL COUNTY, Ark. – For the first time in weeks, many in Yell County are breathing a sigh of relief.
While the water is still high, it’s not rising and officials say news from Oklahoma is promising.
But where there could still be problems isn’t coming from the river but the sky.
The bad news first, rain is in the forecast and the Dardanelle mayor says the middle school could be at risk with a 2-3 inch downpour.
The good news, the water is at its crest and falling- and news out of Oklahoma is promising that we won’t get any more water down river… and that’s extremely good news for homes on the north side of Dardanelle that only yesterday started getting damage to their homes.
“It’s a rollercoaster, it’s something new every day,” says Danny Waldron.
Danny Waldron’s view Monday – his wedding anniversary – is a stark contrast to what he’s woken up to every day for the last 20 years.
“We’ve done things down there, a pergola and garden, flower beds and roses,” said Danny.
All the work put into their backyard has now become only landmarks to see how high the water has risen.
“It’s probably another 3 or 4 feet to what used to be the backyard,” he says.
His neighbors’ homes sustaining structural damage from the violent waves over the weekend and his would too if not for unsolicited help from his employer Blackstone and Duffield Gravel company, which made a rock wall around his home.
“They saved our house last night or I feel like our house would have been gone,” says Danny.
And more relief is in sight.
“It’s been bad but I think we’re seeing a little bit of brightness in our future,” says Mayor Jimmy Witt.
The Arkansas River is at its crest here, and not expected to rise anymore due to water coming from out west.
But rain this week could cause flash flooding in areas that haven’t been impacted yet.
“Breathe a little bit easier, but pay attention, cause it could happen in a hurry,” says Mayor Jimmy Witt.
For now, the Waldrons are counting their blessings and even though they’d normally be on vacation celebrating their anniversary – plans change.
“Staying at home hopefully and sleeping!”
Taking it easy is the biggest gift they can get.
The mayor says they’ll be leaving all sandbags in place for a couple weeks as they watch the path of a tropical storm currently forming.
For those who have received damage- the Yell County Office of Emergency Management has a document with all the information they need to help get people assistance.