A series of thunderstorms pounding the area Friday night turned downtown Flossmoor into a temporary lake, stranding vehicles and damaging several businesses. According to the National Weather Service, the storms dumped 2.65 inches of rain in the three hours from 6:55 to 9:55 p.m., and that was only the most intense period of precipitation.
A series of thunderstorms pounding the area Friday night turned downtown Flossmoor into a temporary lake, stranding vehicles and damaging several businesses.
According to the National Weather Service, the storms dumped nearly 3 inches of rain in the three hours from 6:55 to 9:55 p.m., and that was only the most intense period of precipitation. Rain began shortly before noon and continued through the early morning hours Saturday.
Rain amount reports have varied, but Flossmoor appears to have gotten between 5 and 7 inches of rain during the weather event.
Flossmoor Public Works Director John Brunke said his crews were kept busy barricading flooded streets and pumping out a back yard area on Hagen Lane. One of the worst spots was downtown at the intersection of Flossmoor Road and Sterling Avenue, just west of the railroad viaduct.
“The viaduct was flooded and water entered the Coldwell Banker building at the northwest corner,” he said. The road was closed for some time.
An agent with Coldwell Banker said the basement was flooded, and the water blew in the front doors and rose to a foot or more on the first floor.
Flossmoor Acting Police Chief Tod Kamleiter said officers were busy helping residents affected by the deluge.
“Our officers handled over 25 calls for disabled vehicles in high water,” he said. “Some of the motorists were assisted out of their cars by our staff along with the fire department and staff from our public works department.”
Homewood Assistant Public Works Director Patrick McAnaney said more than a dozen roads were closed in the village during the storm and into the early morning.
He said both viaducts in the village were closed. The 183rd Street viaduct has pumps, but they were overwhelmed for a short time by the intensity of the mid-evening storm. The Dixie Highway viaduct, which has no pumps and a damaged drainage system, was closed longer. McAnaney estimated the road was impassable for five or six hours at least.
At least two vehicles were stranded in high water at the Dixie Highway viaduct, McAnaney said.
Homewood Fire Chief Bob Grabowski said fire crews responded to a number of calls, mainly downed power lines and security alarms that commonly are set off during power outages.
On local social media pages, H-F residents reported difficulty traversing the villages because of the number of blocked roads.
The storms caused a number of isolated power outages throughout the area. ComEd announced that approximately 25,000 customers were affected, mainly along and south of Interstate 80.