Flooding concerns CT residents especially in Bristol - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Flooding concerns CT residents especially in Bristol

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The Pequabuck River was rushing and rising on Thursday night. (WFSB) The Pequabuck River was rushing and rising on Thursday night. (WFSB)
BRISTOL, CT (WFSB) -

There were concerns over flooding in Bristol as the waters of Pequabuck River, which flows right through parts of downtown, were rushing and rising on Thursday night.

Bristol residents have concerned after the state received lots of rain on Thursday. When the heaviest of the rain ended, the first thing Bristol resident Jeff O'Donnell did was inspect the Pequabuck River.  

“It's really neat to see how high the water is,” O'Donnell said.

The Pequabuck River was brown as the water rushing dredged up the mud from places up north.

The river was very active, but O'Donnell said he has seen it higher.  

“There have been a few other big storms since 2011, and I've heard it get pretty loud,” O'Donnell said.

No one in Bristol will forget the lashing Hurricane Irene delivered then especially Michael Volpicella who is the son of one of the owners of the nearby Napa Auto Parts Store. The river runs under the family-run business, but when Irene came, the river ran through it.

“It took us a long time to get everything cleaned up and get all the mud off the floor,” Volpicella said. “There was fish in the office.”  

With water levels in the store knee-high, Volpicella said it was a lesson learned. Now, whenever a flood threat arises, Volpicella said he's ready.

“It does change our activity here because we'll start moving things off the floor,” Volpicella said.

With one eye on the river and the other on the merchandise, Volpicella said he hasn't had to implement the store's flood plan yet, but he's ready.

“You saw a tire going by. It's not usually like that,” Volpicella said. “It's usually kinda flat so you can see how it's getting kinda high right now.”

At the height of the storm, Bristol did see some flooding. King Street, by Bristol Eastern High School, had water flowing over the road. It's since drained, so Bristol Eastern High School should be on Friday.

In Middletown, the Connecticut River was expected to rise to 2 feet above flood stage before the weekend is out. In Middletown along the Connecticut River, the strong rain enough for the water to carry heavy debris.

"Here at the Canoe club tonight we were standing out back just standing looking at the water and we saw approximately a 40-foot tree just float by and a lot of debris," Eric Bronstrup, of Middletown, said. "It's the river has gotten really high."

In Portland, giant puddles forming along Route 17A and near the fairgrounds.  In Willimantic, the downpour leaving the river bubbling and churning. The Natchaug River was also flowing at a rapid clip.

Along the Pawcatuck River in Stonington, it is already a foot above flood stage and area flooding is possible. Courtney Cooper lives by the water she's worried about flooding.

"I live in East Hampton, which is Lake Pocotopaug, and we did notice a big overflow," Cooper said. "So we were actually very concerned about it cause I do live right on the lake. It has been a concern for us." 

River flooding is not uncommon this time of year as we accumulate rainfall and the snow melt contributes as well. Still a lot of people said they were hoping that they will still start to feel the warmth of spring more permanently. All these April showers will lead to a bloom of flowers in May. 

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