Heavy Rain Puts New Early Flood Warning System To The Test

Wednesday's rains produced heavy runoff. (Photo by Rachel Cox)
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BELTON (January 9, 2013)—Heavy rain Wednesday provided a test of a new early flood warning system in Belton designed to allow city officials to warn residents of a flood sooner.

The system uses upstream monitoring stations on parts of Nolan Creek that collect data about rising water during heavy rains and uses a robocall to alert city officials in Belton when the creek reaches a certain level.

There is one monitoring station in Nolanville on Paddy Hamilton Road at Nolan Creek.

On Wednesday city officials used the system's software to monitor the creek upstream in Nolanville.

Plans are in the works with Killeen and Harker Heights to place additional monitoring stations on the creek in parts of those cities in the future.

Three more stations will be built on the creek.

The system cost just less than $12,000 and Killeen and Harker Heights city officials have agreed to each pay $5,000 to help install the new monitoring stations in their cities.

On Wednesday Belton spokesman Paul Romer said the creek rose just more than five feet.

The warning system initiates robocall alerts when the creek hits nine feet in Nolanville.

"Residents and business owners came to us after one of these past floods and said if we would have just had some warning or just had some time it would have helped and we're trying to meet those needs with the system," Romer said.