Choctawhatchee River Residents Survey Flood Damage Via Boat - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Choctawhatchee River Residents Survey Flood Damage Via Boat

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Residents living on the Choctawhatchee River in Walton County are dealing with encroaching water and swift moving currents, as flood waters continued to rise, Wednesday.

River flooding is something Jerry Williams is used to.

"In 1991, it got about 5 feet deep in our old house. In 1994, it got completely over top of it and that's when we built this house....and I'm glad we did," said Williams.

He's especially glad now, as the rising flood water has effectively covered yards, roads and bridges.

As News 13 road down the Choctaw on Wednesday, the vast expanse of water flowed directly into the tree line, reminiscent of swamplands.

With 2.5 feet of water in his front yard alone, it's not something Williams wants to deal with, but it's nothing new.

"Something you're used to. You can expect it every year," he said.

It doesn't make it any less dangerous. Walton County is in under a state of emergency and the Walton County Sheriff's office is urging residents use precaution.

"We are encouraging people who live along the river where the water has gotten up to a point to leave, but again that's their choice...we can't make them leave," said Sheriff's Investigator Wendy Ammons.

As they surveyed the potential damage by both air and water, they know river residents like Williams have taken precautions to protect themselves and their property.

"These people who have homes along the river are accustomed to this. It's not something that they enjoy, but they know that that's something that they have to keep in mind and consider while living here," said Ammons.

In the meantime, they navigate a temporarily aquatic lifestyle with the hope that the flood waters will recede with as little damage as possible.