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Wilmington roads, homes impacted by high floodwaters

Published: Sep. 22, 2021 at 11:30 PM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - At one point during the downpours in southeastern North Carolina on Wednesday, the Wilmington Police Department said more than a dozen roads and intersections were closed because of high water.

Some roads looked more like streams than streets, especially a part of Masonboro Sound Road, which was among one of the last ones to clear.

Valentina McNeill, a 91-year-old, who has lived in her home off South College Road for 22 years said her yard looked more like a pond on Wednesday following two days of rain.

Flooding during downpours has been a constant problem for their street and property, McNeill said, and the issue has gotten worse through the years.

“This is the worse I’ve seen yet. Floyd we had swamped in the garage,” she said. “We have been having this problem since we lived here.”

The rain even flooded part of her home for the third time.

McNeill said they’ve reached out a number of times to the City of Wilmington about deepening the drainage ditch to help alleviate some of the flooding.

“We have tried, I have called, I have raised Cain,” she said. “Because they don’t take care of it — and it needs to be deeper.”

Barbara Bishop lives off Masonboro Sound Road and recorded video of her backyard and road completely consumed by floodwater.

In the 15 years that she has lived in the area, Tuesday was “one of the worst.” Bishop said it reminded her of the conditions during Hurricane Florence.

“The whole entire yard just completely flooded with several feet of water that looks like a lake, like you have a lake in your yard and just completely rushing down and making Masonboro Sound Road completely impassable,” she said.

For Bishop, the conditions on Tuesday reinforced just how important it is to maintain storm drains and drainage ditches.

“We just kind of need to keep the storm water drains clear. Everybody needs to kind of work on that as, you know, a community and we need to keep pressing for more, you know, drainage projects around here,” she said.

Many of those drainage ditches were full Tuesday evening.

If you encounter flood waters on a roadway — the best move is to turn around.

Law enforcement says it only takes six inches of water to cause you to lose control of your vehicle.

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