Flooding overspreads towns, cities north of Indianapolis

Several inches of rain inundates communities

HENDRICKS COUNTY, Ind. - A strong storm system brought little severe weather to Indiana, but heavy rains left behind quite a bit of flooding north of Indianapolis.

Officials in Boone, Howard and Tipton counties declared a state of emergency there, asking residents not to travel unless it is an emergency. Up to 5 inches of rain fell in those areas.

IMAGES: April flash flooding | LIST: Road closures due to flooding

Elwood Mayor Ron Arnold also declared a state of emergency in that city and asked residents to evacuate homes surrounded by flooding. A shelter was set up at Cornerstone Assembly of God.

More than 100 homes and businesses were flooded, Arnold said, and people are trapped in homes.

More than 10 people in Elwood were rescued from their homes or stranded cars, and Arnold stressed that anyone can call 911 to get help. A boil order was also issued for Elwood Friday.

Kokomo officials said the city is experiencing the worst flood on record since a gauge was installed in Wildcat Creek in 1950. The water is more than 18 feet about the creek's base, compared to the typical 2 feet.

The Kokomo fire department has evacuated more than 100 people from their homes, and the Red Cross has set up shelter for displaced residents at Kokomo's Memorial Gymnasium.

Zionsville was also particularly hard hit, with evacuations of dozens of residents.

"It's in our kitchen, in our dining room and going through the rest of the house," said Zionsville resident Beth Murphy. "I woke up with the fire chief calling us, letting us know that they're evacuating."

Zionsville resident Jeff Davidson said he hasn't seen flooding this bad in recent memory.

"I got the town sewer running into my first floor," he said. "I've lived in this block for 59 years in three different houses, and this is the worst I've seen it since 1963."

An entire mobile home park flooded. Residents came to salvage what they could.

Kevin Swan woke up to see his basement window swollen with water in the Cobblestone Lakes neighborhood. He saved irreplaceable items, such as photo albums.

"I was able to salvage most of the things that were important before the water took over," he said.

By early evening Friday, the water was receding from the roads in Zionsville and elsewhere in Boone County, and the county's emergency order was lifted.

Extreme flooding was reported in Hendricks County, just north of Brownsburg near County Road 1000 North at State Road 267.

One couple was rescued after their car was stuck in high water near Brownsburg early Friday.

Brownsburg Fire Department Battalion Chief Stephanie Martindale advised drivers not to ignore warning signs in flooded areas.

"If it's moving water, it's going to be flowing. What happens is that it can actually pull on somebody. When the water gets to your knees, the water can actually pull you down," Martindale said.

Lebanon and Zionsville schools were closed Friday, while Western Boone schools were on a two-hour delay.

A state of emergency was also declared in Tipton County, where up to 6 inches of rain fell in recent days.

 

"I came through several floods trying to get here from Lafayette," said Jenny Kavanaugh, in Tipton. "My dad called me and said it's by far the worst flood he's ever seen here. Coming up on 28, I really didn’t think I would make it through the flood waters, but by the grace of God I did make it through."

In Hamilton County, more than three dozens roads were closed and officials responded to more than a dozen reports of stalled vehicles. The overflowing Cicero Creek caused a local bowling alley to have to close Friday, canceling a state bowling tournament.

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