Traverse City Deals with Nonstop Rain, Flooding Issues

Nonstop rain caused major issues in the Traverse City area Friday; from flooded homes and roads to backed up sewage lines and eroded driveways.Screen Shot 2020 10 23 At 4.03.32 Pm

Intersections such as Three Mile and S. Airport had at least six inches of water this morning, forcing drivers to either turn around or get through it.

Evan Evans was driving through when he ran into trouble.

“I was taking a right at the light there and I got up and saw the water and then it was looking pretty deep. There were cars all around me and everything and I figured, just go for it….I got about halfway through and the car died, so I had to get out in knee deep water,” said Evans.

Some luckier drivers were barely able to push through the pond like roadway this morning. But Evans says he’s never seen anything like this.

“It’s crazy. Little swamps on both sides of the roads there all this rain and everything is piling it right up…I see videos like that all the time online, I never think that would happen around here,” said Evans.

The candidate for county drain commissioner, Andy Smits, said this is becoming a serious issue.

“It’s daunting. The ground is saturated in many places. Folks that have storm water retention on their property, their retention is full. There’s no place for this water to go under the normal path it would take.

Smits is pushing for infrastructure to be reimagined.

“We have been designing our infrastructure and designing our storm water control facilities based on rainfall histories that are decades old, it’s time to look at the way we’re designing things and adapt to a new reality. The patterns of rainfall and storm events, duration, intensity, those might not fit the past histories that designs are based on,” said Smits.

Smits himself says his driveway and his neighbor’s all suffered damaged because of the erosion from stormwater.