Great Lakes Bay Region hit hard by flooding

MID-MICHIGAN (WJRT) (5/19/2020) - While some areas in Mid-Michigan were hit hard with flooding, the Arenac County Sheriff's Department has had to block off numerous roads including major highways.

"Even U.S. 23 is closed in Omer. All roads going north are closed. Most who are heading south on U.S. 23 from the north we're diverting up to M-65, which then goes into M-55 to get to I-75," said Undersheriff Don McIntyre.

Some residents in the area had to evacuate while others are worried that the major flooding will cause damage to their homes.

"I'm a little nervous. I don't want it to flood and wreck my engine. I feel sorry for them. Their garage is probably flooded over there," said Sean O’Brien, a resident of Arenac County.

McIntyre said the flooding response involved a number of agencies.

"We immediately activated all of my law enforcement. First responders and fire departments had to evacuate quite a few people along the Rifle River," he said.

As the rain continues to fall, McIntyre said the roads are more dangerous and everyone should stay home if possible.

"A lot of roads, secondary roads, and side roads are completely impassable and are washed out extremely. Especially, where there are streams and rivers that are washed right out," said McIntyre.

The National Weather Service predicts that lakeshore flooding could last through Tuesday. Deputies and first responders will be out there for as long as it takes to keep the community safe.

"Until this starts to recede my officers will be out there," McIntyre said.