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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Rain, flooding, threaten Clay County, area

Monday, January 5, 2004





Clay County had its share of problems with storms yesterday, when water forced the Clay County Highway Department to temporarily close many roads.

Clay County Highway Supervisor Ron Chamberlain said that while the situation was bad last night, much of it was back to normal this morning.

"We made some signs up and put them up for the inaccessible roads last night," he said. "On our way to work this morning, we went around and took the ones that didn't need to be there down."

Chamberlain said that besides "river-bottom" roads, Clay County is basically back to normal.

"You don't know how (the Eel River's) going to work," he said. "It could still be on the rise or going back down to normal."

Chamberlain advised that parts of C.R. 650 N. may still be shut down today because of a washout, though the department is going to "work all day to get that fixed."

A storm dumped more than 2 inches of rain on parts of central and southern Indiana on Sunday and brought ice and sleet to the state's northern half, making road conditions treacherous.

Bloomington was deluged by more than 3 inches of rain, with rainfall totals of 2.2 inches recorded in Indianapolis and 1.7 inches in Terre Haute, the National Weather Service said. Muncie and Lafayette recorded about 1.2 inches. In Morgan County, high water forced the closure of at least 15 roads.

A flood warning remained in effect for all of central Indiana, including Bowling Green and the Eel River in Clay County, through the early hours this morning.

However, the Clay County Sheriff's Department reported there were no serious accidents or other flooding problems reported to that agency over the weekend.

As much as 4 inches of snow fell on parts of northern Indiana. The first major winter storm of the season created hazardous driving conditions along Interstate 65, causing numerous slideoffs but no serious accidents or lane blockages, Indiana State Police said.

The four-county state police district at Bremen received reports of more than 20 crashes in the two hours after snow started falling there about 10:30 a.m. EST, Sgt. Brad Weaver said. No injuries were reported, perhaps because vehicles were going only about half of the posted 55 mph speed limits.

Callers tied up telephones lines seeking advice on whether to venture out onto the roads, Weaver said.

"If they have to go someplace, please allow extra time and be cautious," Weaver said from the Bremen post, about 15 miles southeast of South Bend

On the Indiana Toll Road, police reported hazardous conditions and numerous slide-offs.

"We're swamped," said a state police dispatcher on the Toll Road.

The weather service forecast light snow or flurries across much of the state Monday. Highs were expected to be in the middle 20s in the north to the middle 30s in the south, with a continuing drop in temperatures Tuesday and Wednesday.

"Winter is here for a while," said Sam Lashley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in North Webster.

Editor Frank Phillips contributed to this report.

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