Story Summary

Severe April Storms and Flooding in Chicago area

After wreaking havoc on the morning commute, closing schools and prompting scattered evacuations, the massive storm that dumped upwards of a half-foot of rain on parts of the Chicago area overnight is expected to continue throughout the day, with flooding the big concern.

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The City of Naperville is asking residents who suffered flood damage to document their losses online and help the state qualify for federal disaster assistance.

Forms are available on the village website and need to be filed by Wednesday at 10 a.m.

If the state of Illinois qualifies for federal funds, Naperville officials say another application process will determine who receives money.

Additional information is posted on the City’s Flood Recovery webpage at http://www.naperville.il.us/floodrecovery.aspx.

People in Des Plaines may get a little relief on the roads today.

Village officials are hoping to re-open major arteries, including river road.

The river crested to record levels on Friday and remains at flood stage.

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Des Plaines flood cleanup

The town is expected to start efforts to open roads as soon as water levels drop to eight feet.

The main roads that are still closed due to flooding are:

  • Golf closed Rt. 45 to East River Rd.
  • River Rd. closed Golf to Kensington
  • Algonquin closed between River Rd. and Lee St.
  • Lee closed between S. River Rd. and Elk Blvd.
  • River Rd. between Miner and Touhy
For the latest traffic updates, go to: wgntv.com/traffic

or follow @ChicagoDrives on Twitter

Local News
04/22/13

Flood water still rising in NW suburbs

Riverside drive in Nunda Township is regrettably living up to its name– and then some.  A few homes are underwater and other residents are still fighting.

Michelle Dubois is one of the residents battling the aftermath of last week’s devastating rainfall, “So we have sandbags pyramided up this plywood and so based on the elevation if the water we keep adding sandbags 48 and it keeps going up,” she said.

NW Suburban flooding

From the air, you can see the extent of what they are dealing with along the Fox River and lake,  sandbags, thousands of them, being stacked up, trying to hold off the floodwater.

Nunda Township Highway Commissioner Don Kopsell said “There’s about a mile back there and it’s completely covered. It’s over three foot here by itself.”

Just to the south, the Algonquin Dam doesn’t even present a challenge to the river, now three and a half feet above flood stage– and just beginning to crest. Some of the worst in recent memory.

Aaron Dullum said “This is the worst it’s been. So 2007 it was bad, 2006 it was bad, This year, worse.”

On the minds of so many facing the flood water– the forecast for rain in the next 24 hours.

The Des Plaines River is still above flood stage, after cresting last Friday.  At last check it was at 9.65 feet.  It will need to be at 8 feet in order for roads in the Des Plaines area to reopen.

From the air you can see just how wide-spread the flooding is in Des Plaines three days after the river crested at a record 10.92 feet.

From the ground roads look like rivers with only stranded cars as a reminder they are not.

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Kevin Skier owns the Family Car Care shop in the heart of town.  He was finally able to open his doors yesterday after a good cleaning.

“Thank God none of the equipment got under water, none of the cars were under water, everything was above the ground,” Skier said.  “We were lucky this time.”

With all the road closures getting around town has been a traffic nightmare.

Des Plaines city officials blame part of the flooding woes on neighboring Mount Prospect and Prospect Heights for filling a 600-foot gap in a levee.  They claim that move violated their permit through the state’s Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois River Lakes and Streams Act.

“They filled it up with sandbags which meant all this extra water came down to Des Plaines and Rosemont and the down-river cities, and we got more flooding because of it,” acting Des Plaines Mayor Mark Walsten told WGN.

Walsten says the waters are finally starting to recede and he is hoping to get more roads open tomorrow.  He is asking residents to be patient for another couple of days.

WGN spoke with the village manager in Mount Prospect, Michael Janonis, about this permitting issue.  He declined to comment on it.

Acting Mayor Walsten says Des Plaines will let the Department of Natural Resources and other state agencies handle the issue.  Des Plaines will stay out of it.

Meanwhile, Walsten is hoping that the waters will recede enough so that major roads like River Road can reopen — hopefully by tomorrow.

Flooding and water damage from a major storm like the one our area saw last week can affect your entire home. 1Capture

From ceilings and walls to flooring and of course, your basement the cleanup can be a nightmare.

First, blame last summer’s drought.  “The soil actually shrank, creating openings in the earth for water, lots of water, to run through and into your basement,” said Matt Stock, owner of U.S. Waterproofing.

Homeowners who have never had a problem with flooding are seeing all kinds of problems from overwhelming Spring storm.

They’re dealing with foundation cracks, sump pumps that are backing up and water coming up through the floors and walls of the foundation.

Experts say the cleanup needs to be done correctly in order to avoid mold and mildew.

For an unfinished basement, it’s recommended homeowners scrub the walls and floor with a mixture of three parts water and one part bleach.  Mold can get started in as little as 72 hours.

Finished basements are more complicated, often requiring the complete replacement of carpet and furniture.

Township officials in Crystal Lake are appealing for volunteers to help protect homes along the Fox River.

The river is expected to crest sometime Monday.

Officials in Nunda Township are asking anyone who has some free time to help assemble sandbags to protect homes against the rising water.

If you’d like to volunteer, sandbagging operations will be going on through 9 p.m. Monday at the Nunda Township Road District offices at 3518 Bay Road in Crystal Lake.

It’s going to be a tough commute for people in the northwest suburbs today.

Flood waters are still causing trouble along several roadways.

Portions of River Road in Des Plaines is still covered in water.

The water is starting to recede, but several roads won’t be open for today’s commute.

That includes a number of arterial streets and roads that lead into River Rd.

That includes:

  • Oakton between and River Rd and Lee St
  • Golf Rd between River Rd and East River Rd
  • River Road between Golf and Perry
  • River Road between miner and Touhy
  • Central between River Rd and East River Rd
  • Algonquin Rd Between River Rd and Lee
  • Rand Rd between Golf and Dempster.

Drivers are urged to take alternate routes north and south through Mt. Prospect Rd, Elmhurst Rd and Wolf Rd.
You can also find other routes by taking East and West Dempster to Miner to Northwest Hwy, Touhy Av and Lee Street/Devon ave.

Des Plaines officials say parts of River Rd. may not be open until tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Des Plaines is blaming neighboring towns for the problems that followed last week’s flooding.

City officials claim Mt. Prospect and Prospect Heights filled a gap in levee 37.

That move may have violated their permit through the state’s Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois River Lakes and Streams Act.

Des Plaines Mayor and City Manager claim filling that gap increased flood and related hazards for the town.

City officials are calling on the two towns to clear the gap in the levee.

It’s going to be a tough commute for people in the Northwest suburbs this morning.

Flood waters are still causing trouble along several roadways.

River Road in Des Plaines is still covered in water.

The water is starting to recede, but several roads won’t be open for today’s commute.

That includes a number of arterial streets and roads that lead into River Road.

The main roads that are still closed due to flooding are:

  • Oakton between and River Rd and Lee St
  • Golf Rd between River Rd and East River Rd
  • River Road between Golf and Perry
  • River Road between miner and Touhy
  • Central between River Rd and East River Rd
  • Algonquin Rd Between River Rd and Lee
  • Rand Rd between Golf and Dempster.

Suggested routes: North and South –Mt. Prospect Rd, Elmhurst Rd and Wolf Rd.

Suggested routes: East and West – Dempster to Miner to Northwest Hwy, Touhy Av and Lee Street/Devon ave.

For the latest traffic updates, go to: wgntv.com/traffic

or follow @ChicagoDrives on Twitter

The Des Plaines City Council will hold an emergency meeting Sunday morning, to address the massive flooding in the area.

In Des Plaines, the water is still five or six feet deep in some places. That means for hundreds of people living along the river, the only way to navigate the streets is by boat. The Des Plaines river has started to recede, after cresting just below 11 feet Friday night. A massive cleanup will soon be underway to clear the garbage that’s left behind from the flood.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is also expected to make an announcement today, over the flooding in Albany Park. Mayor Emanuel toured the hard hit area Friday afternoon, along with Congressman Mike Quigley. Albany Park City officials said utilities still have to be restored to some residents, but flood waters have been pumped out of the community’s residential streets.

Governor Pat Quinn took a helicopter tour through several flooded communities in the Fox River Valley Saturday. Quinn added four more counties to the state disaster declaration: Knox County, Livingston County, McDonough County, and Douglas County. The state disaster declaration will help affected communities recover from flooding, and will allow the state to pursue federal relief and support. He will tour several more areas today, including: Ottawa, Marseilles, and Morris.

Quinn said the best way to get that assistance is to record every bit of loss, in detail. “The most important thing for people who have flooding in their basement or in their house or anywhere on their property – the same way with businesses – is to document everything,” Quinn said. “And, that’s also true of the governments.”

About 75 miles southwest of Chicago, the town of Marseilles is still recovering from its evacuation of 1,500 residents when the Illinois River breached the North Bank Levee.  More than 300 homes were flooded. Marseilles officials said the river has crested, and people will be allowed back into their homes as soon as all of the damage is assessed. That could take up to another week.

Flooding caused many residents in the southwest suburbs to evacuate their homes by boat Friday.

Nearly 700 people had to be evacuated by boat in the town of Forest View, after the Des Plaines river spilled over its banks.

Governor Pat Quinn declared 38 counties disaster areas, clearing the way for more help. Mayor Rahm Emanuel toured hard hit areas of Albany Park Friday afternoon, along with Congressman Mike Quigley. The Governor surveyed the damage of the flooding in West Suburban Bellwood and Riverside.

Quinn said he didn’t believe the state had ever seen so much wide spread flooding. The state disaster declaration will help affected communities recover from flooding, and will allow the state to pursue federal relief and support.

Officials said the best way to get that assistance is to record every bit of loss, in detail.

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