Flooding

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE News

Updated 2:15 p.m. Friday, Aug. 13.

Several days of severe weather this week left thousands across Michiana without power. At the peak of the storms, more than 15,000 households and businesses in the Elkhart area lost power. 

 

Elkhart County Emergency Management Director Jennifer Tobey says severe weather is normal this time of year, but the series of storms and accompanying extreme heat complicated cleanup and restoration efforts. 

 

Courtesy of Tipton County

Flood insurance will be cheaper for more than 40 percent of policy holders in Indiana. FEMA changed how it calculates the premiums in the federal flood insurance program.

Flooding Now Threatens Dow Superfund Site In Michigan

May 20, 2020
(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

MIDLAND, Mich. (AP) — Floodwaters that overtook dams and forced the evacuation of about 10,000 people in Central Michigan now threaten a Dow Superfund site and downstream communities. The Tittabawassee River crested in Dow's hometown of Midland Wednesday at just over 35 feet, about 3 feet under what officials previously forecasted. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer had warned the city could end up under about 9 feet of water by Wednesday evening. Dow says floodwater has begun mixing with on-site containment ponds, prompting the company and U.S. Coast Guard to activate emergency plans.

Rafi Wilkinson via AP

DETROIT — Officials in Michigan are warning that efforts to curb the coronavirus pandemic could have a serious impact on relief and repairs during what is expected to be another tumultuous spring flooding season

Courtesy of IDEM

A seemingly simple bill to help local governments cut costs when repairing drains is working its way through the state legislature. But environmentalists worry it could harm the state’s wetlands. 

The bill proposed by Sen. Victoria Spartz (R-Noblesville) would allow local governments to fix or reconstruct a drain in a state wetland without a permit from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.

Water nearly reaches the arches under Jefferson Boulevard
Jennifer Weingart

 

More than a dozen flood-prone homes in South Bend will be coming down soon thanks to a grant from FEMA.

The $2.1 million grant from FEMA will be matched partially by the county. More than $2.8 million will go to acquiring and demolishing 15 homes and properties along the Phillips and Laing ditches in the Jewell Woods neighborhood on the south side of South Bend. 

Heavy Rains Expected To Cause Potential Flooding In Michiana

Jan 10, 2020
JENNIFER WEINGART

Weather experts say heavy rains expected to start Friday night could cause flooding across Michiana. 

Three to five inches of rainfall is expected over the weekend with most falling late Friday night and Saturday.

Goshen Preserves Land To Prevent Flooding

Jan 8, 2020

Goshen City Council approved the purchase of a piece of land along a creek Tuesday night to prevent it from being developed. 

Northwest Indiana Mayor Says Lake Waters Threaten Pavilion

Nov 13, 2019
https://www.nps.gov/indu/planyourvisit/portage-lakefront-and-riverwalk.htm

PORTAGE, Ind. (AP) — A Northwest Indiana mayor said his police and fire departments want to close a city-managed lakefront pavilion that many people use to enter Indiana Dunes National Park.

Portage Mayor John Cannon said the rising waters of Lake Michigan threaten the $17 million Lakefront Park and Riverwalk.

Park Superintendent Paul Labovitz says that high waves on the lake breached a dune adjacent to the pavilion for the first time last week, and waves were seen rushing into the area again Monday.

Concord H.S. Performing Arts Wing Damaged By Rain

Jul 22, 2019
Photo provided by Concord Community Schools

Concord Community Schools released information today indicating that heavy rain Sunday damaged the school's Beickman Performing Arts Center, classrooms and offices. 

Two-Year-Old Dies On Flooded Road In Indiana

May 2, 2019
Indiana State Police

This is from the Indiana State Police:

Wabash County – Today, at approximately 1:40 p.m., officers from the Indiana State Police, the Wabash County Sheriff’s Department, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources responded to a 911 call reporting an occupied, submerged, vehicle on Wabash County Road 925 South east of State Road 13. 

Rainfall Causes Some Flooding in Michiana

May 1, 2019
Derek Jensen / Wikimedia Commons

 

Heavy rainfall over the last few days is causing some minor flooding in the area.

According to NOAA hydrology forecasts rivers in the area expected to crest on Thursday. Most will be in minor flooding territory, though the Elkhart River at Goshen is expected to crest with moderate flooding.

Future Of Flood Damaged Niles Park Uncertain

Apr 16, 2019
Jennifer Weingart/WVPE

NILES, Mich. (AP) — The city of Niles is trying to decide what to do about a popular park that's been closed for more than a year due to flood damage.

Island Park in the St. Joseph River had been affected by earlier floods, but the severe February 2018 flooding deposited muck 2 feet (0.6 meters) deep and twisted a bridge used to access it. The park remains closed and a gate at the bridge entrance is padlocked.

After last week’s subzero temperatures and a swing that starts this week near fifty above zero, some local emergency management officials are worried about flooding.

Fast thawing, potential rainfall and ice floes in rivers diverting water could cause some flooding in prone areas. Officials are not concerned that this will be as bad as flooding that happened last February.

Disaster Recovery Centers to Close Permanently

Jun 6, 2018
Jennifer Weingart / WVPE Public Radio

 The three disaster recovery centers set up in Indiana after record late winter flooding will close permanently this Saturday.

The centers in South Bend, Elkhart and Utica were created to help people impacted by the flooding fill out applications for assistance through FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the state.

Applications and assistance will still be available online and by phone. The centers will be open on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. then will close.

 

Three Months After the Floods, Michiana Still Cleaning Up

Jun 1, 2018
Jennifer Weingart

 

Three months after February’s record breaking floods, Michiana is still cleaning up the mess left behind. Disaster centers in the region are working to help residents with recovery efforts.

The FEMA disaster recovery centers in Elkhart and South Bend have only been open for about a month. So far $2.3 million dollars in aid has been handed out to nearly 1,900 registrants.

FEMA Center Still Handing Out Flood Aid, Holcomb Visits

May 30, 2018
Jennifer Weingart

 

While Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb was in Northern Indiana on Wednesday he visited the FEMA disaster assistance center in Elkhart.

The center in Elkhart is one of three in Northern Indiana providing help for those impacted by record flooding in late February.

Residents can apply for FEMA assistance, or for loans and help from the U.S. Small Business Association.

Holcomb greeted all the workers in the center, as well as a few people getting assistance.

It's Raining, no major flooding predicted

May 14, 2018

 

Showers and thunderstorms dumped rain across Michiana this weekend and still are today.

Experts say the area might see some flooding but nothing like February.

 

Michiana has seen several inches of rain in the last couple days with more on the way this evening.

Sam Lashley is a senior meteorologist with the national weather service. He says so far flooding has been minor.

Michael Linville / WVPE

 

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb formally requested federal assistance for counties affected by February's flooding.
 

The disaster request, from the Governor’s office, addressed to the President of the United States, was sent out Friday, after the state was granted an extension to gather information.

 

 

This season’s weather has been particularly bad for potholes, and recent historic flooding has not helped road conditions.

This winter there has been a lot of freeze and thaw. This creates a lot of potholes, as anyone driving in Michiana has noticed.

Marty Morgan is the street commissioner for the City of Elkhart. He says besides ordinary potholes there have been streets ruined and potholes created by the recent flooding.

State opens centers to help with flooding recovery

Mar 5, 2018

The state of Indiana has set up three assistance centers to help people with flood recovery.

 

The centers in Elkhart, Lake and Jasper Counties are meant to be a one stop shop for information and help with flooding recovery.

Spokesperson Amber Kent says the state is trying to make things easier for those impacted by the flooding.

“It’s so very frustrating to go from place to place to place, we tried to bring all of those resources together into one location.”

State opens centers to help with flooding recovery

Mar 5, 2018

The state of Indiana has set up three assistance centers to help people with flood recovery.

 

The centers in Elkhart, Lake and Jasper Counties are meant to be a one stop shop for information and help with flooding recovery.

Spokesperson Amber Kent says the state is trying to make things easier for those impacted by the flooding.

“It’s so very frustrating to go from place to place to place, we tried to bring all of those resources together into one location.”

Elkhart Mayor Addresses Flood Recovery

Feb 26, 2018
Barbara Anguiano / WVPE

 

 

As Elkhart residents begin the process of recovery after days of flooding, Mayor Tim Neese addressed related concerns today in the city. Police Chief Ed Windbigler and Fire Chief Chad Carey joined the mayor as he addressed the press.
 

Neese commended the support the city has received from local communities, and the work that city departments have done since the flooding. .
 

He said the main focus now is on recovery and cleanup.
 

South Bend waiting for river to recede

Feb 26, 2018
A yellow car sits on dry ground with water covering the street behind it
Jennifer Weingart

 

It was sunny and warm in South Bend on Monday. And the river has receded quite a bit, but some roads and parks are still closed.

 

The St. Joseph River at South Bend is down to just over nine and a half feet. That’s still within major flood stage, but down three feet from where it peaked last week.

Sheryl Brown was out for a lunchtime walk around Bartlett Street in South Bend with three of her colleagues from Memorial Hospital.

Elkhart residents spend the weekend cleaning up flood damage

Feb 26, 2018
The river swells to cover houses and a pavillion in water
Jennifer Weingart

 

As flood waters continue receding some people are able to get back into their homes to clean-up, but other houses are still underwater.

On top of that, power is still shut off for safety and some areas have to deal with looting.

Generators hum all through formerly flooded neighborhoods in Elkhart as residents pump out water and work on drying their basements.

There’s no electricity here. The power was shut off to prevent electrical fires.

Berrien County sees flooding, evacuations

Feb 23, 2018

 

Berrien County, Michigan like other places around Michiana has been hit by flooding and high water as rainfall and snowmelt mix.

Just downriver from where Old U.S. 31 crosses the St. Joseph River in Berrien Springs, Shamrock Park is underwater. A little further downriver, so is River Springs Trailer Park. Both have been evacuated.

Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey said it’s likely to be a while before residents can get back into their homes.

South Bend looking toward clean-up as river recedes

Feb 22, 2018
Water nearly reaches the arches under Jefferson Boulevard
Jennifer Weingart

 

The St. Joseph and Elkhart Rivers have both peaked and are starting to recede. Still some residents living in the flood zone continue to battle water while others start to think about clean-up.

The St. Joseph River peaked last night at 12.7 feet, nearly two feet above the historic flood mark of 10.9 last set in 1993.

Goshen residents combat flood

Feb 21, 2018
Water covers a road near mobile homes sitting in water
Jennifer Weingart

 

Rivers and streams around Michiana continue to overflow their banks following rapid snow melt and heavy rain. Some residents have been evacuated and others are filling and placing sandbags to try to save property.

 

A state of emergency over the flooding was declared in Goshen late Tuesday.

 

Roads are closed in Elkhart, St. Joseph and Berrien Counties. Some schools are closed for a flood day.

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