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Noble County under a Local Disaster Emergency for flooding

Officials told WFFT the water hasn't gone done as much as they had hoped.

Posted: Mar. 4, 2018 10:34 PM

NOBLE COUNTY, Ind. (WFFT) - Noble County is under a Local Disaster Emergency because several county roads are still flooded.

Officials told WFFT the water hasn't gone done as much as they had hoped.

Noble County Emergency Management Acency director Michael Newton said first responders will have to consider different strategies to deliver basic emergency services, including using a boat in some areas.

The hardest hit area continues to be the West Lakes near Rome City.

Many homes around Waldron Lake are still surrounded by water.

People living along the lakes said it could've been a lot worse.

Last year, people living along the West Lakes experienced flooding they've never seen before.

Water damaged or destroyed at least 100 homes as it lingered for months before it started receding.

"The flood was coming and the water was coming, the water was rising. Everyone of us in the West Lakes Association had our fingers crossed," said Gordon Anthony, who has lived on Waldron Lake for more than a decade.

Last year, Anthony had water inside his home.

Sunday, the water was going down and was a few feet away from his house.

"The thing we found out, even though we had more water coming through than we did last year, it got out a lot more than it did last year," said Anthony.

Last summer, people living along the West Lakes cleared more than 200 trees from the Elkhart River down stream from the lakes.

Newton said that helped reduce the effects of flooding this year.

"Had it not been for the work the residents did this last summer, we would've been in a worse mess, I believe, than last year," Newton told WFFT.

Newton said people living along the lakes still need to be prepared to wait a little longer in case of an emergency.

"Last week we lost an ambulance trying to go through water to get to someone. It took water in the engine and destroyed the engine," said Newton.

However, that's not going to keep Anthony away from the lake.

"No, we're not planning to leave. Our family comes up in the summer time. They have a destination to come to," he said.

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources banned all motor boats on the West Lakes and the Indian Lakes in LaGrange County.

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