Monday, April 11, 2011

Flooding closes roads across northwestern Vermont

Road crews close North Williston Road near Rt. 117 on Monday, April 11, 2011 after heavy rainfall flooded the roadway near Essex.
All of Vermont is under flood warnings or flood watches as of 5:45 p.m. Monday, according to the National Weather Service office in South Burlington. Rivers including the Winooski, Lamoille and Missisquoi are above flood stage and rising in some communities.
Flood warnings -- meaning flooding is occurring -- were in effect in Chittenden, Caledonia, Lamoille, Orange, Orleans and Windsor counties, according to the weather service.
Forecasters issued a flood warning Monday night for the Winooski River in Essex, where as of 7 p.m. the waterway was only 6 inches below flood stage of 15 feet and expected to rise about 12 more inches.
Along the Winooski in Richmond, a large tree floated down the river until it became lodged under the Bridge Street Bridge and threatened to snap water and sewage lines that run along the span. The road and the bridge both were closed.
The tree was about 1 foot in diameter and some 50 feet long.
The incident threatened to dump sewage into the Winooski and cut off municipal water service to part of town if the tree snaps the pipes. Several days would be needed to restore water service if the pipe is severed, town officials said. Crews said there was little they could do other than hope for the tree to break apart before it causes damage, and to wait for the water level to fall.
Vermont 15 is closed between Cambridge and Jeffersonville due to flooding at the Wrong-Way Bridge, where forecasters said the Lamoille River was 2.4 inches above flood stage of 13 feet and forecast to crest near 14 feet before receding by morning.
The Missisquoi River in North Troy was more than a foot above flood stage of 9 feet but was forecast to begin receding by early Tuesday. If the Missisquoi reaches 11 feet, "water will inundate River Road between Troy and North Troy, as well as portions of Loop Road in Westfield and Troy. Water will cover portions of Route 100 near Troy and well upstream near Lowell. There will be widespread flooding of lowlands, fields and pastures along the Missisquoi from Lowell to North Troy," forecasters said on the weather service's website.
Read more here.

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