Homeowners in New Hartford are still under mandatory evacuation orders Tuesday night. Many of the 400 who left town are spending the night at a shelter in Shell Rock.
With Beaver Creek spilling out of its banks Tuesday, Butler County authorities feared it could reach record levels.
Flood waters topped a berm on one side of the city early Tuesday. It’s the second time in three weeks the city has had to deal with flooding.
Spilling over an unfinished levee, water started to creep in to people’s yards downtown as Beaver Creek topped its highest point since 2008.
The river reached its record crest in 2008 at 15.7 feet. Tuesday morning the water level surpassed 15 feet.
The water level has since dropped around 6 inches through the day, Tuesday. As a result, much of downtown avoided extensive flood damage.
As most homes remain dry, transport remains an issue with vehicles traveling in and out of town being hampered by flooded and closed roads including Highway 57.
“When it gets this high, the water starts going over the blacktop going north out of town and then cars going south, east or west – the whole downtown flooded – you can’t get anywhere. You’re just stuck here,” explained resident Thomas Fobian.
Four-hundred of the 560 population decided to leave town as a precaution. Those that stayed had their power supply unaffected.