Record Rainfall Floods Ohio Highways And Roads | WOSU Radio

Record Rainfall Floods Ohio Highways And Roads

Jun 19, 2019

Many roadways and underpasses around Central Ohio remain under water Thursday morning. Two sections of I-71 were also closed on Wednesday night due to a record amount of rain.

Heavy rain on Wednesday night caused severe flooding in several areas of Central Ohio, especially in Bellefontaine and Richwood.

A flash flood warning remains in effect for Franklin County until 10:30 a.m. on Thursday. Flood warnings for neighboring counties are in place until Thursday evening. 

I-71 was closed in downtown Columbus between 11th Avenue and I-670 as well as south of Grove City on Wednesday night due to flooding.

Wednesday's rainfall set a single-day record of 2.65 inches at John Glenn International Airport, breaking the previous record of 1.94 inches set in 1973.

The village of West Lafayette in Coshocton County is in a state of emergency, after hard rain that began Tuesday around 11 p.m. By midnight, the village experienced flash flooding.

“Now, we’re kind of in a recovery stage,” says West Lafayette mayor Stephen Bordenkircher. “We did issue a disaster declaration and we’ve asked the county to do the same because the flooding reached out beyond the village, and it’s quite substantial."

Bordenkircher says emergency responders had to relocate 30 families to emergency shelter at the local Baptist church.

“They’re scurrying over at the school,” Bordenkircher says. “The superintendent, I was with him at 4 a.m. this morning and working diligently to address their problems. And it’s closed some roads and impacted the community.”

He says several basements have collapsed, and a couple of schools were damaged by the water.

“One car was abandoned because the flood waters were so deep. We have another car that, despite signs and warnings, drove into the flood water,” Bordenkircher says. “Fortunately, no one was hurt, but the vehicle is now sitting in the middle of the flood water.”

The village and county are working to clear the water and keep people safe.