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Some in Tulsa urged to evacuate because of flooding risks

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Water is released Friday from the Keystone Dam into the Arkansas River northwest of Tulsa. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began increasing the amount of water being released from the dam on Friday to control the flooding. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World]
Water is released Friday from the Keystone Dam into the Arkansas River northwest of Tulsa. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began increasing the amount of water being released from the dam on Friday to control the flooding. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World]

TULSA — Officials are urging residents to prepare to evacuate some Tulsa neighborhoods that are near stressed, old levees along the Arkansas River.

City officials said Saturday that people living west of downtown should consider leaving for higher ground, even though the levees aren't currently considered to be in danger of failing.

Mayor G.T. Bynum says the levees were built in the 1940s and haven't had to hold back this much water since 1986. Officials also say the levees will need to hold back that amount of water until at least Wednesday, which is three days longer than they previously expected.

Officials say if an evacuation becomes necessary, it would need to happen quickly.

The Arkansas River in Tulsa was 4 feet above flood stage Friday.

Related Photos
<strong>Becky Foreman packs up her car to leave ahead of a possible flood from the Arkansas River in Tulsa. [Mike Simons/Tulsa World]</strong>

Becky Foreman packs up her car to leave ahead of a possible flood from the Arkansas River in Tulsa. [Mike Simons/Tulsa World]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-15741918128c9fb6423cc029ced4a3c8.jpg" alt="Photo - Becky Foreman packs up her car to leave ahead of a possible flood from the Arkansas River in Tulsa. [Mike Simons/Tulsa World] " title=" Becky Foreman packs up her car to leave ahead of a possible flood from the Arkansas River in Tulsa. [Mike Simons/Tulsa World] "><figcaption> Becky Foreman packs up her car to leave ahead of a possible flood from the Arkansas River in Tulsa. [Mike Simons/Tulsa World] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b7254841ca5e2fe52bd446d6b1111b65.jpg" alt="Photo - The River Spirit Hotel and Casino has flood waters surrounding it Friday on the Arkansas River. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] " title=" The River Spirit Hotel and Casino has flood waters surrounding it Friday on the Arkansas River. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] "><figcaption> The River Spirit Hotel and Casino has flood waters surrounding it Friday on the Arkansas River. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-4c346d72ac29b789459ca0973c7bf44c.jpg" alt="Photo - Grant Scepanski walks through his Indian Springs Estates neighborhood in Broken Arrow, Okla., as flood water from the Arkansas River rises Friday, May 24, 2019. (Mike Simons/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Grant Scepanski walks through his Indian Springs Estates neighborhood in Broken Arrow, Okla., as flood water from the Arkansas River rises Friday, May 24, 2019. (Mike Simons/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Grant Scepanski walks through his Indian Springs Estates neighborhood in Broken Arrow, Okla., as flood water from the Arkansas River rises Friday, May 24, 2019. (Mike Simons/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-5a475f30f3d28d95694b1103ceb6abe3.jpg" alt="Photo - Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-df4729020c5f3934cb6eb7b5b06c3861.jpg" alt="Photo - Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Homes are flooded on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-333fe83d523603f23d61cd81692a688c.jpg" alt="Photo - Homes are flooded near South 145th West Ave. near Oklahoma 51 on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Homes are flooded near South 145th West Ave. near Oklahoma 51 on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Homes are flooded near South 145th West Ave. near Oklahoma 51 on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a0d9ea62e1c988c726d2fe8ff7248e66.jpg" alt="Photo - A pickup truck evacuates from an area in north Jefferson City Missouri as floodwaters from the Missouri River rise over the road on Friday, May 24, 2019. The flooding come as residents are still cleaning up from a powerful tornado that hit the state's capital city on May 22. (AP Photo/David A. Lieb)" title="A pickup truck evacuates from an area in north Jefferson City Missouri as floodwaters from the Missouri River rise over the road on Friday, May 24, 2019. The flooding come as residents are still cleaning up from a powerful tornado that hit the state's capital city on May 22. (AP Photo/David A. Lieb)"><figcaption>A pickup truck evacuates from an area in north Jefferson City Missouri as floodwaters from the Missouri River rise over the road on Friday, May 24, 2019. The flooding come as residents are still cleaning up from a powerful tornado that hit the state's capital city on May 22. (AP Photo/David A. Lieb)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-7310275cd64597ed5157d54d89ce175b.jpg" alt="Photo - Flood waters cover the parking area of River Spirit Hotel and Casino on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Flood waters cover the parking area of River Spirit Hotel and Casino on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Flood waters cover the parking area of River Spirit Hotel and Casino on the Arkansas River on Friday, May 24, 2019, in Tulsa, Okla. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-4771b4651b24c321b9b5e1e771b7fb39.jpg" alt="Photo - Homes are flooded near the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)" title="Homes are flooded near the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)"><figcaption>Homes are flooded near the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-1eeaf91f2142244af37350b44d5bb220.jpg" alt="Photo - A resident who declined to be identified wades through Mississippi River floodwater to his Winfield home on Friday, May 24, 2019. The river is scheduled to crest for a third time late next week. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)" title="A resident who declined to be identified wades through Mississippi River floodwater to his Winfield home on Friday, May 24, 2019. The river is scheduled to crest for a third time late next week. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)"><figcaption>A resident who declined to be identified wades through Mississippi River floodwater to his Winfield home on Friday, May 24, 2019. The river is scheduled to crest for a third time late next week. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-81de9753befe25336a7913cd0ac51d9c.jpg" alt="Photo - Andy Gaul of Tucson, Arizona photographs his bike in front of the flooded Lewis & Clark Boat House and Museum in Frontier Park on Friday, May 24, 2019. St. Charles officials closed the park and the Katy Trail due to Missouri River flooding, moving a weekend Irish Fest to New Town St. Charles. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)" title="Andy Gaul of Tucson, Arizona photographs his bike in front of the flooded Lewis & Clark Boat House and Museum in Frontier Park on Friday, May 24, 2019. St. Charles officials closed the park and the Katy Trail due to Missouri River flooding, moving a weekend Irish Fest to New Town St. Charles. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)"><figcaption>Andy Gaul of Tucson, Arizona photographs his bike in front of the flooded Lewis & Clark Boat House and Museum in Frontier Park on Friday, May 24, 2019. St. Charles officials closed the park and the Katy Trail due to Missouri River flooding, moving a weekend Irish Fest to New Town St. Charles. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-65323d37e1affb5cefe6a925b7d364c9.jpg" alt="Photo - After residents emptied mattresses and other furnishings from a previously flooded Foley home, Mississippi River flood water rises again in Lincoln County for a scheduled third crest next week on Friday, May 24, 2019. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)" title="After residents emptied mattresses and other furnishings from a previously flooded Foley home, Mississippi River flood water rises again in Lincoln County for a scheduled third crest next week on Friday, May 24, 2019. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)"><figcaption>After residents emptied mattresses and other furnishings from a previously flooded Foley home, Mississippi River flood water rises again in Lincoln County for a scheduled third crest next week on Friday, May 24, 2019. (Robert Cohen/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2b743f8ad3aa24d00858c3056b01aa34.jpg" alt="Photo - Water is released Friday from the Keystone Dam into the Arkansas River northwest of Tulsa. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began increasing the amount of water being released from the dam on Friday to control the flooding. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] " title=" Water is released Friday from the Keystone Dam into the Arkansas River northwest of Tulsa. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began increasing the amount of water being released from the dam on Friday to control the flooding. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] "><figcaption> Water is released Friday from the Keystone Dam into the Arkansas River northwest of Tulsa. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began increasing the amount of water being released from the dam on Friday to control the flooding. [Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World] </figcaption></figure>
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