Dams fail in Michigan, residents told to evacuate ‘as far from river as possible’

Dams failed in Michigan on Tuesday, May 19, 2020, and residents in Midland County were urged to evacuate immediately as the Tittabawassee River and other waterways flooded the area. Screen shot: ABC News video

MIDLAND COUNTY, Michigan, May 19, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — On Sunday, May 17, the National Weather Service in Detroit issued a flood warning for Midland County, and the City of Midland shared that information with its residents, saying the Tittabawassee River was forecast to crest at 30.6 feet — 6.6 feet above flood stage — on Wednesday morning.

By 11 a.m. Tuesday, the river level was 28.46 feet and rising, and at 7:49 p.m. Tuesday the “evacuate immediately” order went out across the city.

“The Edenville Dam and Sanford Dam have failed,” said the emergency alert on Midland’s website. “Residents of Edenville and Sanford should evacuate immediately.

“Seek higher ground as far east and west of the Tittabawassee River as possible.”

All residents of Midland City south of US Highway 10 and west of Eastman Avenue were alerted to prepare for evacuation, and “If you have nowhere to go, please go to Midland High School…,” the city urged.

The Midland Daily News reported late Tuesday night that the Tittabawassee River had already reached 30.54 feet and is expected to crest at 38 feet Wednesday morning.

“… more than 4 feet higher than the flood of 1986,” the Midland Daily News noted.

Shelters were set up in the city and surrounding area, and shelters at two high schools had to be moved because of the flooding and power outages.

Gephardt Daily will have more on this developing national news story as information becomes available.


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