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Kalamazoo County road officials warn of heavy rain, flooding on roads

Kalamazoo County Roads - Rainfall
Posted at 4:44 PM, Jun 25, 2021

KALAMAZOO COUNTY, Mich. — Kalamazoo County is preparing for threats of heavy rains and flooding on Friday night and into the weekend.

With around two to four inches of rainfall expected, Kalamazoo County road officials are warning drivers of water that may accumulate on the roadway.

"If the water table is sitting higher then sometimes that can play a factor, and if there is a natural water source near it, said Road Commission of Kalamazoo County's Communications Administrator Elli Blonde.

That heavy rain or flooding over the road may cause a dangerous situation for drivers.

"Don’t drive through it. I know it might be tempting and looks fun, but you don’t know what is underneath of that. That road might be eroded. There might not be the structure you think is under there, or there might be washout where the road is crumbling," said Blonde.

In the city of Kalamazoo, road closures and detours may be necessary in sections near Crosstown Ponds, like East Crosstown Parkway and surrounding areas.

Some of the areas to look out for flooding are surrounding the Kalamazoo River, Axtel Creek and Portage Creek.

"If they were sitting in between a pond of something and then the water table rises, it is more likely to flood over that road," said Blonde.

The Kalamazoo County Road Commission said if there is some pooling on certain parts of the roads, it may be because of a blocked storm drain or backed-up leaching basin.

"The water goes into them and then the water will slowly seep out and leach into the ground, but when that ground becomes too saturated that water is going to pool up," said Blonde.

If roads become too covered, barricades will be put up to keep drivers safe. Another thing the road commission said people should look out for are downed trees.

"Trees don’t just fall down from wind, they get heavy with all this rain and it ends up bringing them down. Plus you have the ground that ends up getting a little softer or tender. The trees just can’t handle it," said Blonde.

If you do see a roadway barricaded, do not try to drive through. If there is a road in your area that is submerged with water, call 911.