Flooding on Rt. 1 has shut down the roadway in both directions at the Indian River Inlet Bridge between Bethany and Dewey Beaches.
Delaware Dept. of Transportation’s Jim Westoff says while the bridge is fine, the closure is due to water washing over the roadway.
Meantime, while evacuations have not been ordered, state leaders are strongly urging residents in flood-prone areas to move inland or to higher ground.
Wind advisories and coastal flood warnings are in place for Kent and Sussex Counties, while winter weather advisories are in effect for New Castle and Kent. The National Weather Service says all three counties will experience some form of heavy precipitation in the form of rain or snow. Tidal flooding is expected.
Consequently, the Delaware Emergency Management Agency, along with county officials, are strongly encouraging residents in coastal communities, to relocate now, before tides and flooding cut off exit routes. DEMA warns if people wait to evacuate at the height of the storm, leaving then might be dangerous or impossible.
DelDOT is asking Prime Hook residents to leave now, while they can, before high tide and the intensifying storm floods Prime Hook Road, cutting off access to the mainland. High tide is expected around 4:30 p.m.
DelDOT says a temporary connection to North Bay Shore Drive will be opened later today until 7 p.m., but warns the connection could close sooner, should flooding occur.
In addition to Prime Hook, DEMA’s primary concerns in Sussex County along the Delaware Bay include Broadkill Beach, along with inland areas like Angola and Oak Orchard.
Kent County residents of Big Stone Beach, Bennetts Park, South Bowers Beach, Bowers Beach, Kitts Hummock, Pickering Beach, and Woodland Beach are also urged to move to safer areas.
New Castle County residents of Bay View Beach, Augustine Beach, Delaware City and the City of New Castle where flooding typically occurs, are being told to pay attention to the weather, and be ready to move should the need arise.
Forecasters are predicting rain throughout the day, changing over to snow in the overnight hours statewide, with wind gusts as high as 55 mph in some areas.