Indiana Flooding Devastates Neighborhoods

Thursday, March 12th 2009, 12:26 pm
By: News 9

People along the Tippecanoe River are bracing for some of the worst 
flooding they've ever seen. Dozens of homes are already underwater; some for 
the third time in just over a year.

The National Weather Service says the river in Winamac is rising higher than 
they expected because of all the rain we saw Tuesday night.

Wednesday evening the river was 3.5 feet above flood stage. Some of the 
buildings in the city park are completely underwater, and it's still expected 
to rise another two feet by Saturday.

It could break a record for the worst flooding the area has ever seen.

For now, Anthony Burton can still wade into his house near Winamac on the 
Tippecanoe River.

"Yesterday at this time the river was on the other side of the house," he told
 WSBT News.

By Saturday, he'll have to canoe.

"At 15.4 @1/8feet@3/8 the water's going to be on this side over here," he said.

The river is expected to crest at a record 15.4 feet ? nearly 5.5 feet above 
flood stage.

"I just hope it doesn't get any higher than that," he said.

So does Robert Richardson. His father and brother live on the other side.

"You can't get to it unless you go by boat or kayak," he said.

All down the Tippecanoe, dozens of homes are underwater and for each one of 
them, it's all too familiar.

"We didn't think it would get this high again," Richardson said.

Just last year, the same river flooded twice, and nearly as bad.

Richardson lost his home, and after a year of red tape, he's still in
temporary  housing waiting to rebuild.

"We're hoping by June, maybe by June," he said, "but the house will be above 
flood level which is 8 feet."

It's a tough lesson from Mother Nature; but one no one around here will forget
 anytime soon.

"Thirty years we've been down here and it's never gotten this bad," Richardson
 said. "So it's terrible."

The flood stage is 10 feet and by Wednesday evening the river was already at 
13.5 feet. The National Weather Service expects it to crest at 15.5 feet by 

If you are stranded, call your local police or fire department. They've
already  rescued several people by boat since Tuesday night.