OZARK (KFSM) — Historic flooding along the Arkansas River forced the State Highway 23 bridge in Ozark to close Monday night (May 27), according to Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) officials.
Crews were at the bridge Monday night to monitor rising water levels.
The Highway 23 bridge was already down to one lane due to high water. ARDOT says they would wait as long as they could before closing it. The closure announcement came at 8:38 p.m. Monday.
Emergency crews are continually monitoring the rise of the river and reporting data back to the Corps of Engineers in order to determine what roads need to be closed.
ARDOT spokesperson Danny Straessle told 5NEWS that if bridges are closed due to flooding, it’s because of the water flow, not because of the structure itself. He says the bridges are designed to handle tremendous water flow.
Click here for a list of the roads closed in Franklin County due to the flooding.
BREAKING NEWS: the State Highway 23 Bridge crossing the #Arkansas River at Ozark is closing tonight. Crews will be on-scene at 8:30 to monitor rising water levels. The route is already down to one lane due to high water. We will wait as long as we can before closing it. #ARnews
— Arkansas DOT (@myARDOT) May 28, 2019
The images below were submitted by 5NEWS viewers and show the bridge being closed and the water level prior to its closure.