Residents soaked

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:29 PM

“The rain definitely made it seep in,” the Grand Haven woman said. “We’ve also got a problem in the backyard that leaves us with a small pond.”

Sharier said it isn’t the worst-possible scenario, but it is frustrating.

“It’s not horrible,” she said. “It’s not even an inch deep.”

Grand Haven Public Works Director Bill Hunter said the worst flooding in the city is in the southeast, such as the low-lying areas near Park and Orchard avenues.

“We’ve had quite a few reports (of flooding) — and what we’ve been finding is, it is a lot of groundwater getting into basements,” he said. “There’s no where for the water to go right now.”

Spring Lake Township Public Works Director Ron Brondyke said there isn’t a lot people can do about the saturated groundwater because of the massive amount of rain this week.

“All over the township, we have been getting many reports,” he said. “It is all over the place.”

Spring Lake Village Manager Chris Burns said the phones at Village Hall have been "ringing off of the hook with calls about flooded roads."

“We hope it gives us a break over the weekend,” she said.

Burns urged residents that experience flood conditions on their roads or water backing up into their basements to call the Village Hall.

“If there is water over the road, don’t drive through it — call us,” she said. “You just don’t know what you are getting into.”

Burns said public works crews will be able to identify if the flooding is the result of groundwater seeping into the basement or a sewer issue.

“If it is sewer-related, we want to know so we can address it accordingly,” she said.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Management has distributed 5,000 sandbags as of Thursday. An additional 12,000 are being distributed to local units of government to further assist residents in protecting their homes. 

Residents are urged to call their local township hall in advance to be sure that there are bags available. Check with individual townships for “after-hours” distribution.

There is no charge for the sand bags; however, they must be used for flood prevention purposes.

Sand is available through several suppliers, including S&M Gravel in Grand Haven. 

Officials said it is important to only fill bags just over half full so the sand can settle to fill voids in the wall once it is built.

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