A stretch of state highway 17 remains closed today after 2 straight days of flash flooding in our area.
Since Sunday night our area has been pummeled with torrential downpours on and off. River gauges are getting their workout going up and down, but not nearing dangerous levels despite the drastic fluctuations.
Since yesterday morning all state highway traffic that’s wanted to travel through Tioga County has had to get off the highway between Exit 62 in Nichols and Exit 63 in Lounsbury. The East River Road detour has been 3 miles of solid traffic in each direction on a two lane residential road with no shoulder, and dangerously near the Susquehanna River bank in some parts. It’s not meant to handle this kind of traffic, yet the bridges that pass over the Wappasening Creek in both directions remain closed due to foundation damage. Experts say at least a few days will be needed for the water levels to go down, for proper assessment to take place and work to be done.
The Governor has dispatched state aid in the form of 39 staff, and a small army of heavy equipment to Broome and Tioga Counties to assist with cleanup.
Town of Tioga Supervisor Lou Zorn is asking for no unnecessary travel. The following road are closed:
Neiger Hollow Road
Diamond Valley Road (bridges already closed for replacement)
Dry Brook Road
Meanwhile, the frustration level in Vestal remains high. Since 2006, Vestal has been seeking permission to remove a river blockage of fallen trees but the DEC won’t allow it.
State guidelines state that municipalities are not allowed to make changes that would affect the environment. Vestal town supervisor John Schaffer says they have the manpower to do it, and all of the necessary resources to do it, just not the state’s permission. The town plans to continue working with the state, but is hoping to get some of these regulations lifted as soon as possible.
But as of right now, the state has no plans to make any changes.
A man with 17 license suspensions has been caught speeding in Broome County. State Police arrested 39-year-old, Trenton Jackson, of Rochester after a trooper observed two vehicles traveling at about 90 miles per hour while on Interstate 81 southbound in the town of Barker. Both vehicles took the exit 7 off ramp and stopped at the Mirabito gas station in Castle Creek. The trooper issued both drivers a ticket for speeding. Further investigation determined that Jackson had 17 suspensions on his New York driver’s license. He was issued an additional ticket for that.
Whitney Point area residents have now seen an elusive alligator twice along the Tioughnioga River between Whitney Point and Lisle.It was first seen Saturday, and then again Monday morning. DEC crews were in the area Sunday trying to capture the alligator, but they couldn’t find it. They believe it could have been someone’s pet that grew too large and was released in the area sometime in the last month.Obviously, if you see it, don’t go near it. Just call the DEC as soon as possible.
The National Weather Service in Binghamton has issued an Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory for Southwestern Broome County in central New York, Southeastern Chemung County in central New York, Southern Tioga County in central New York, Northwestern Susquehanna County in northeastern Pennsylvania, and Northeastern Bradford County in northeastern Pennsylvania until 1230 AM EDT.
At 924 PM EDT, local law enforcement reported minor flooding continuing from the heavy rains of earlier today. The heavy rain has moved well to the east and weakened. Runoff from the heavy rains will continue to flood some roadways, underpasses, urban and low-lying areas. The waters will continue to recede through the evening hours but still will pose hazards. Motorists are urged to stay out of areas that were hard hit by floods today. Many roads could be damaged and lead to dangerous conditions.
Some locations that will see continued impacts from flooding include Vestal, Endicott, Barton, Sayre, Waverly, Owego, Windham, Little Meadows, and Choconut
The Flash Flood Watch is now in effect until 8:00PM for portions of central New York and northeast Pennsylvania, including the following areas, in central New York, Broome and Tioga. In northeast Pennsylvania, Bradford and Susquehanna.
Scattered thunderstorms will develop this afternoon. Some of these storms will produce locally heavy rain. Portions of Bradford and Susquehanna Counties in Pennsylvania as well as Broome and Tioga Counties in New York received 2 to 4 plus inches of rain last night. The potential for an additional inch of rain in a short period of time today may lead to more flash flooding, especially in these sensitive areas.
Most favorable areas for flash flooding are the poor drainage areas in and around urban locations, and the sensitive areas that have recently received heavy rain and experienced flooding.
Rain, moderate to heavy at times, will continue to affect the area into this morning. While the very heaviest of the rain has eased at this time, parts of Bradford and Susquehanna Counties in Pennsylvania as well as Broome and Tioga Counties in New York have already received 2 to 4 plus inches of rain resulting in Flash Flooding. Most of this area will see at least another half inch to inch of rain by mid morning which will bring a continuing potential for Flooding and even localized areas of continued Flash Flooding as any additional rain will be pure run off. There will likely be a lull in precipitation later Monday Morning but by afternoon additional showers and storms are likely which may exacerbate problems in places that have already seen flooding. * Most favorable areas for flash flooding are the poor drainage areas in and around urban locations, and the sensitive areas that have recently received heavy rain and experienced flooding.
Officials are now ready to announce the identity and autopsy results of the pilot who was killed in a plane crash in Towanda last Wednesday morning.Scott Wilcox was the only person on board. The Bradford County Coroner says they were able to rule out any medical emergency, so it’s still unclear what caused the Zodiac Lite sport aircraft to go down.The plane crashed about two-miles east of the Bradford County Airport, bursting into flames.The coroner says victim was identified from his pacemaker, which had a unique serial number on it.The National Transportation Safety Board is looking into what led to the crash.A memorial service for Wilcox has been scheduled for July 29th at Victory Church in Troy at 1 PM. A receiving line will be held afterwards, followed by a gathering at the American Legion in Wyalusing.
Whitney Point Mayor Ryan Reynolds has reported on Facebook that there has been an alligator sighting in the Southern Tier. The gator was reported along the Tioughnioga River between Whitney Point and Lisle. The mayor says authorities believe the alligator was once somebody’s pet and was released in the area in the last month. The mayor has asked anyone who sees the alligator to contact the DEC as soon as possible so that it may be relocated.