Our memory of a snow-filled winter washed away by violent storms and dangerous flooding
Violent storms sent waterways over their banks, causing dangerous flooding in the Philadelphia region. Mayor Nutter stated that this was the 7th worst rain storm in Philadelphia history. Flooding on the Schuylkill River was more severe than Superstorm Sandy and Hurrican Irene. Many low-lying areas in Philadelphia and surrounding counties were submerged by the violent storm. The torrential rains dropped over 5 inches of rain, forcing the evacuation of several apartment complexes and many rescues. There were 233 fire incidents reported including 62 water rescues and three residential rescues. In total there were 1,014 police incidents. PECO reported 569 power outages in the county.
In Philadelphia, Main Street in Manayunk was closed due to dangerous flooding Thursday morning. Parts of Kelly Drive and MLK Drive were also closed after the Schuylkill River overflowed its banks. In Manyunk, three people were rescued Wednesday night from the roof of a SEPTA bus that became stranded in flood waters on Flat Rock Road in Manayunk. Two passengers and the driver were stranded, Philly.com reported. NBC10 said the two passengers climbed onto the roof of the bus and waited for help.
In Chester County, the surging Brandywine River forced officials to shut down Baltimore Pike at Creek Road in Chadds Ford early Thursday. In Darby, the water reached up to the front doors of some homes and police blocked the intersection of MacDade and Springfield due to dangerous flooding. Inside Fibber’s Suds & Sodas, a beer distributorship next to Darby Creek in Darby Borough, half the merchandise went underwater. Owner Mike Truong said he lost about $30,000 when his store flooded three years ago because he stayed closed for a month while waiting for federal officials to inspect the damage. He said he will not stay closed again.
In Montgomery County, authorities evacuated two apartment buildings overnight and were helping residents trapped by flood waters in another building Thursday morning. The Londonbury and Riverwalk apartments on Washington Street in Conshohocken saw dangerous flooding from the river. The SEPTA regional rail tracks that run alongside the apartment complexes were also submerged. Emergency officials reported many local roads closed and a number of water rescues.
And in Delaware, the White Clay Creek looked more like a raging river. The water level rose fast causing the swollen creek to overflow its banks. Nine children and a school bus driver had to be rescued after their bus was stuck in high waters.
Today flood waters started to recede in the Philadelphia metro area, a day after record rainfall inundated a large swath of the metro area. Fortunately, the forecast for the area should prove conducive to drying out and cleaning up areas hardest hit. Still, please exercise caution in the aftermath of the storm. Watch out for slick sidewalks to avoid slip and fall accidents. The Department of Licenses and Inspections Commissioner Carlton Williams said that even though the storm is over, his office is keeping a close eye on empty or abandoned properties. “When buildings absorb that much water in that short a period of time, it can increase the likelihood of a collapse, especially in vacant properties,” he said.