I remember the huge rains and flooding of October 1954. Was that worse than our recent deluge?
— Bob Johnson, Buffalo Grove
The heavy rain and floods of October 1954 were worse. This year, a two-month dry spell preceded the deluge, while in 1954, the Oct. 9-11 heavy rain episode occurred just a week after another major flood. On Oct. 3, nearly 4 inches of rain fell, flooding basements and viaducts. The already-soggy ground was not able to not handle the additional 6.72 inches that fell Oct. 9-11 at Midway Airport. Damages from the flooding exceeded $25 million. The Chicago River overflowed into parts of downtown; the river was so high that numerous drawbridges were inoperable. Highest area totals in the west suburbs approached 13 inches. The city’s official October 1954 rain totaled 12.06 inches and still ranks as the wettest October on record.