Whitmer declares state of emergency
By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
From special trash pickups to help residents recover from flooded basements, to concerns about reaching local hospitals, some roads are still blocked as Downriver residents recover from Tuesday night’s heavy rains.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s state of emergency declaration in the wake of widespread flooding will enable residents to seek help in recovering from the damages, and cities have begun to post claim forms on the city websites.
Wednesday night in Melvindale residents spoke up at the city council meeting, expressing concern about the difficulty in reaching Beaumont Hospital, Dearborn. With the Southfield Freeway flooded, Outer Drive flooded under I-94, Oakwood initially flooded at I-94, and Greenfield flooded under the railroad viaduct between Rotunda and Michigan Avenue in Dearborn, Melvindale residents could only reach Beaumont Hospital by taking Schaefer to Michigan Avenue in a convoluted route.
Baker College was closed at Outer Drive in Allen Park due to flooding, and flooding closed the Southfield Freeway from I-94 northward to Michigan Avenue. Traffic taking the remaining open routes meant a slow go, especially during rush hour, along Oakwood, Michigan Avenue, and Schaefer.
Taylor Schools were closed Wednesday due to street flooding.
U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D- 12 District) said the rising flood waters threaten the roads and infrastructure.
“We will continue to work closely with state and local officials, and provide resources to impacted communities,” Dingell said.
Taylor residents were urged to go to the city’s website, cityoftaylor.com, for links to damage assessment forms, and officials at city hall are collecting forms detailing flood-related damage.
Taylor residents can leave debris curbside until their weekly trash run, or may drop debris at the city’s Racho Road transfer station south of Eureka, which will be open extended hours this weekend, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 4 and 5. Taylor residents can learn more by calling city hall at 734-287-6550, during regular business hours.
Lincoln Park residents will have a special curbside rubbish pickup May 4, for items damaged by basement flooding only. Residents may also take flood damaged materials to the Lincoln Park DPS facility, 500 Southfield Road, 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Lincoln Park Mayor Tom Karnes said all city resources will be used to ensure resident safety following the flooding.
“This allows us to meet the obligations we have to our residents in providing the highest level of service in protecting their safety and welfare.”
(Sue Suchyta can be reached at [email protected])