COLUMBUS – As local emergency management officials respond to flooding in impacted counties across the state, the State Emergency Operations Center remains activated and continues to monitor and assess the ongoing severe weather across the state.

State officials urge residents to remain diligent as the severe weather continues to move through Ohio throughout the evening by paying attention to rising waters and road closures.

The National Weather Service noted that as the potential for severe weather remains a threat, residents within the watch area should keep an eye on the weather, listen to updates, and be prepared to take immediate action should heavy rains and flooding occur or flash flood warnings are issued.

Be aware that flash flooding can occur. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.

If you must prepare to evacuate, you should do the following:

* Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed to do so.

* Disconnect electrical appliances.

* Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.

* Secure your home. If you have time, bring in outdoor furniture. Move essential items to an upper floor. Be aware of stream, drainage channels, and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.

If you have to leave your home, remember these evacuation tips:

* Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.

* Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground if you can do so safely. You and the vehicle can be swept away quickly.

Additional information on road closures can be found at<>.