As Susquehanna River rises, thousands ordered to leave Harrisburg homes

    The mayor of Harrisburg Thursday ordered evacuations of the city’s riverfront streets and low-lying areas.

    Mayor Linda Thompson says the 6,000 to 10,000 residents in city flood zones should leave their homes–or stay at their own risk.

    City spokesman Robert Philbin said water was rising faster than forecasts were estimating.

    “If the water is rising in your neighborhood, evacuate. Once you evacuate, do not come back,” Philbin said. “Statistically, most injuries and fatalities occur when people enter a flood zone, not when they leave a flood zone.”

    The Susquehanna River was expected to crest at 29 feet by late Friday or early Saturday.

    Thompson is asking downtown businesses to close throughout the weekend.

    PPL Electric and UGI shut down utilities in low-lying streets along the riverfront in Harrisburg Thursday.

    A Red Cross shelter was set up at Harrisburg High School for evacuees.

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