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The excessive rain has finally stopped, but the Red River in Northeast Texas and Southwest Arkansas continues to rise and flood portions of the area.

The new month of June has brought a welcome change in the weather pattern. The continuous and excessive rains have moved out and a week of sunshine and no rain is in the weather forecast for our area. That is good news to rain-weary residents. However, the flooding Red River is expected to stay at major flood stage for the first couple of weeks of June.

The river is expected to crest at at 35 feet and Pecan Point north of De Kalb later today, Monday. It should crest at about 31.5 feet at Index on Highway 71 in the next 24 hours. Further east, the river will crest by Friday at Fulton at about 32.2 feet.

Areas that are flooding now will remain flooded for at least the next week as water levels will stay close to those levels before they begin a slow decline as we head deeper into June. Also, while we don't expect any rain over the next seven days, June is still a fairly wet month around the area and we can expect more rain as we head into mid month. This should keep water levels on the Red fairly high.

The National Weather Service says even as we get into normal summer conditions the river should stay on the high side until late July.

Remember, the U.S. 259 bridge at Pecan Point remains closed as does State Highway 8 and State Highway 41 river crossing between New Boston and Foreman.

Also closed is the Index Bridge on U.S. Highway 71 between Texarkana and Ashdown. Travelers are having to head east to Fulton to cross Interstate 30 to get from Texarkana to Ashdown.

Over the weekend, the Texas Department of Transportation closed portions of several farm-to-market roads near the river north of Texarkana. They are FM 559 from FM 1397 at Wamba to the end of maintenance and FM 2253 from around two miles north of FM 2148 to FM 559.