More than 1,000 residences and businesses are without power and at least two Mount Airy City Schools and one Surry County School have been forced to close because of heavy rains and flooding in the city.
Both Mount Airy High School and Middle School are closed because of the outages and flooding, according to city school officials. However, buses were already on their routes and had picked up a number of children and youth at those schools. School officials said they would not be rerunning the bus routes to take those youth home — instead parents and guardians can pick them up in the commons area of the school.
In Surry County school officials said they will be closing Flat Rock Elementary School at 11:30 a.m. because of a power outage there. School officials said that Duke Energy anticipates it may be as late as 5 p.m. before power is restored, so they opted to close the school. Officials said the children will be sent home with a bag lunch.
As of 10 a.m. today, Duke Energy said there were more than 1,000 customers in Surry County without power, most in the Flat Rock area of Mount Airy and surrounding areas. Surry-Yadkin Electric Co. was reporting 52 outages in Surry County at the same time. Most of the power outages were caused by downed trees, which fell once the ground became saturated with the rain.
Overnight and early Monday morning, the National Weather Service said between 2 and 3 inches of rain fell in and around Mount Airy, which helped saturate the ground and result in some large trees falling. Most of the flooding, however, was caused by even heavier rains in Carroll and Patrick counties in Virginia, where more than half a foot of rain fell overnight, welling rivers and creeks which flowed downstream, resulting in the Ararat River and other creeks and streams around Mount Airy spilling over their banks Monday morning.