Flood Waters Force Silver Slipper's "Unofficial" Closing

By A.J. Giardina - bio | email

WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - The low lying areas in Hancock County that typically flood in any kind of storm began flooding in the overnight hours. And water over the road leading to the Silver Slipper Casino forced an unofficial shutdown. The tidal surge began around 3 a.m. Thursday morning.

"Our casino is fine. The water is headed to our parking lot, but it's not an issue. We just can't get there from this corner down, that last quarter of a mile is underwater, and it's just not safe," Silver Slipper GM John Ferrucci said.

By 6am, Ferrucci knew his customers could not stay.

"Technically, we're open. We have all of our staff there, we just don't have any guests right now. We won't let guests in the building until we can get that sorted out."

Those who couldn't get out got some help from the Slipper Fire Truck. Water was three feet deep in some spots on the road leading to the casino, and crews stayed busy trying to keep the debris clear.

Ferrucci says once the water subsides and it's safe to drive down Beach Drive, the casino will reopen. He hopes that's no later than Friday morning.

The rising water brought out the curious near Coleman Avenue in Waveland

"It surprised us this morning. When we got up and came out, the water was already up this high. It took us by surprise," Jeff Segura said.

Another surprise? Snakes washing up along the coastline.

"Lots of snakes, like hundreds of them out here. They're everywhere. So if you're out here, please be careful. It's really bad," Kathy Wolfe said.

The snakes may be unusual, but flooding in Waveland is not. Supervisor David Yarborough says whenever a Hurricane is in the Gulf, roads go underwater at the Point in Waveland and other low spots.

"We have Clermont Harbor, Herron Bay, pretty much the same areas going every time," Yarborough said.