POPLARVILLE, Miss. (WVUE) - Two days of heavy rains and severe storms left many Pearl River County residents scrambling to clean up Monday (May 12) after widespread flooding drenched the area.
Anthony Byrd lives in Poplarville and said the line inside his car shows how high the water got. He said he was sound asleep during the storm, but his father woke him and his wife up.
“The only thing that woke him up was he heard a cat meowing,” Byrd said. "So when he woke up and opened the front door, he realized that the water was up to his steps.
Across his property, debris was scattered around. Byrd said most of the items under their trailer are now yards away. In his yard, tall grass leaned over, proof of how strong the water moved.
In stark contrast, the sun came out on Monday, so Byrd and others began the cleanup process.
Pearl River Emergency Services Director Danny Manley said the rain fell so fast it caught some off guard. He said the last time he has ever experienced so much water at once was in 2012, during Hurricane Isaac.
“It was very similar," Manley said. “It was worse in some places, and of course not as bad in others.”
On Saturday, swift water rescue teams responded to dozens of homes. At one point, the Coast Guard was called to airlift two people and three dogs to safety after they were stranded on a flooded overpass.
“The water was just rushing so quickly, that there’s no way for them to get across the water without being slammed on the bridge or turned over,” Manley said.
Kenneth Davis and his 87-year-old mother were one of the people rescued by boat.
“We was in the front room right there. I just opened the door and water started running in,” Davis said. “We came out and they rescued us.”
Inside his family home, Davis said the carpets are ruined.
“Right now it’s soaked wet in there. All the carpet. It’s got to come out," Davis said.
In the kitchen, the floor is buckled with large bumps across. Davis said he didn’t have flood insurance and doesn’t believe his neighbors did either.
“We know something bad happened, so we pray for something good to happen to us now,” Davis said.