An 'inconvenient' flood

Becky Vargo • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:28 PM

Mary Palazzolo smiled as she plodded in her rolled-down hip waders through the Grand River floodwater covering 120th Avenue.

"It’s not so bad this time," the Robinson Township woman said as she headed to her car parked at a higher elevation, about a quarter-mile from her home on Limberlost Street.

At least Palazzolo is able to walk out of her home.

About 6 inches of water covered the lower part of the road that serves a handful of homes on Limberlost and River Haven Marina.

Palazzolo said Wednesday was the third day flooding forced her to park her car far from her home. She carried a flashlight so she could find her way when she returned home at night from her second-shift job for Grand Haven Area Public Schools.

Earlier this year, Palazzolo stayed in her house as an ice jam caused the river to rise and cover the road. She said it was too dangerous to walk in the flooded area at that time because of double layers of ice, with water in between them.

The National Weather Service has a flood warning posted for the Grand River at Robinson Township. The river rose past its flood stage of 13.3 feet on Monday. It was at nearly 15 feet on Wednesday afternoon.

“This is just a little inconvenience,” Palazzolo said as she looked to the sky.

If you think it's been a rainy month, you would be right. Jared Maples, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service office in Grand Rapids, said the Lakeshore's April rainfall was at 4.13 inches as of Wednesday morning. That's 2.48 inches above normal for this point in the month.

The highest rainfall recorded in the area for April is just over 8 inches, in 1909. Maples said the Lakeshore has already reached the 10th-highest rainfall total for April.

The area has received 14.82 inches of precipitation since the first of the year. That’s about 7 inches above normal.

Rain is in the forecast through Friday night, when snow is also a possibility.

The most severe weather is expected late this afternoon, with some pop-up thunderstorms producing a half-inch to an inch of rain per hour. Between 2 and 4 inches of rainfall is forecast for today and tonight.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

To see a photo gallery of the flooded area, CLICK HERE.

To read the latest flood warning information, CLICK HERE.

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