High Water Closes Roadways, Concerns Grow As More Rain Approaches

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Rain from overnight on Wednesday that continued into the early afternoon is causing issues for drivers.
With more rain on the way high water is becoming a concern for road crews and first responders.
Despite the warm front that has caused us to experience above average temperatures the ground is still frozen, which is why just over 1 inch of rain is causing issues on roadways because it can’t soak into the ground.
Already roads are closing and crews are preparing for conditions to worsen as more rain is on the way.

High water and road closed signs are popping up around Vigo County as they shut down roads that typically see flooding during heavy rain.

“The first thing this morning the roads started flooding. So we got the crews out and we have been out clearing pipes out getting the roads and looking and seeing what we have got,” says Vigo County Highway Department Superintendent Dan Bennett.

Wednesday the Valley saw just over an inch of rain with a similar system on the way and no where for the water to go causing the Vigo County Highway Department to close seven roads.

“The ground is frozen underneath and it is surface water trying to get away, it just needs some time,” says Bennett.

Vigo County has a map that shows live updates of road closures due to high water.
Bennet urges drivers to err on the side of caution when it comes to driving through water,”when you come up on water if you can’t see the road through the water I wouldn’t drive through it.”

Tuesday night, Sugar Creek Fire Department had to assist in a water rescue after a woman’s car ended up in a pond, “we will make on average at least 10 to 20 water rescue calls a year,” says LT. Samuel Stranahan. He says this time of year it is typical for their water rescue team to be called out because of the high water.

“Whenever the weather changes and the roads are slick. high flooding, ice,” says Stranahan. 

The Sugar Creek Water Rescue Team responds to water rescues in Vigo County and other surrounding counties.
“We can save people from the river, ponds, icy conditions because we do have people trained in ice water rescue,” says Stranahan.

One of the big concerns leading up to Thursday is that many creeks and run off’s are already filling up and crews anticipate more uncommon roads could begin to flood.

To report a flooded roadway or highwater to the Vigo County Highway Department, call 812-466-9635.

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