News From Terre Haute, Indiana

June 27, 2013

Floodwaters receding, but caution remains

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — One water rescue of a motorist stranded by floodwater occurred this morning south of Terre Haute.

Honey Creek firefighters were called to First Street between Vigo and Rigney drives — an area that routinely floods during periods of heavy rainfall —- at about 7:09 a.m. to assist the driver.

Also, Battalion Chief Josh Sitler said the 7100 block of Hultz Road has a washed-out culvert, and some other local roads have been damaged by high water.

Vigo County Emergency Management Agency Director Dorene Hojnicki stated this morning that most of the overnight rainwater has retreated across the county.

“The problem was the amount of rain and how fast it came. Small creeks and rivers can’t handle the volume, then they overflow,” Hojnicki said.

Vigo EMA on Wednesday evening issued a flood advisory for travel on Hultz/Curry; Carlisle/Brookside; Indiana 159 between Harlan and Woodsmall; Curry Drive; Sunset Pike and Springhill; Cottom Drive; Hutchinson, Greese Road between McDaniel and Indiana 159; Elizabeth Lane in Southwood; Vigo Drive; Cutsinger/French; and Cottom Drive between Stoute and VanDyke. That advisory has now been lifted, but motorists should still remain cautious in low-lying areas.

In Clay County, some low-lying roads in Lewis Township remained flooded this morning.

A culvert washed out on County Road 850 southwest of Briley Chapel.

Lone Tree Road south of Indiana 59 running into Greene County has also been closed due to high water.

In Sullivan County, some high water remains on several local roads, but all state highways are open to traffic. A dispatcher reported that several trees had fallen during Wednesday’s rainfall, and some local roads were washed out and remain hazardous even after the water has receded.

Greene County issued a travel advisory Wednesday evening that ended at 6 a.m. today. However, Greene EMA Director Roger Axe said several trees have fallen due to groundwater saturation, and some creekbanks are washed out. One rural home has about $40,000 in damage due to the floodwater, he said.

“We asked people not to travel unless it was absolutely necessary,” Axe said of the advisory. While the water has receded from state highways 54, 59, 231 and 67, several local roads have been damaged or washed out.

The public should also be wary of trees with root systems weakened by the water saturation, Axe said.