Heavy rains swell local creeks, close roads

Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Overnight rains closed several roads in the county, including (from top) County Road 1200 South and County Road 1300 South at Mill Creek in Cloverdale Township, as well as Creek Road along Big Walnut Creek in Madison Township.

Heavy rains swelled local creeks Tuesday into Wednesday, causing a number of local road closures in Putnam County.

According to the WeatherSTEM station located at Greencastle Middle School, the city had received 2.3 inches in the previous 24 hours as of noon on Tuesday.

However, at least one local weather watcher north of the city reported measurements in excess of three inches Tuesday morning.

An additional 0.3 inches fell by noon on Wednesday — some of it a wintry mix as temperatures dipped into the 30s.

The rain resulted in various closed roads in the area on Tuesday, particularly along Mill Creek in the southeastern portion of the county. In Cloverdale Township alone, water from the creek was across county roads 1200 South, 1300 South (Owen County line) and 775 East. Additionally, high waters from Mill Creek and a tributary also forced the closure of 925 East and 100 East in Jefferson Township.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the creek wasn’t even at flood stage at Cataract, the nearest observation point, until it reached the 15 feet threshold at 1:45 a.m. on Wednesday.

As of 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, the creek was still rising at Cataract, having reached a measurement of 15.83 feet. However, projections were for the water level to start receding in early afternoon.

Meanwhile, Big Walnut Creek was closed on Creek Road near Oakalla Bridge in Madison Township as of late Tuesday morning, with water approaching road level in other locations.

By Tuesday evening, the high water — which was very close to the road in several other spots — had taken down a tree that fell across the road at another point closer to West Walnut Street Road.

On Big Walnut, the flood stage at the nearest observation point in Reelsville is 12 feet. It was in excess of this point for about 24 hours from 11:15 a.m. on Tuesday through 10:45 a.m. on Wednesday.

The waters reached their highest point at 4:15 a.m. at 13.59 feet, still considered a “minor” flood.

Upstream, where Big Walnut crosses County Road 550 East in Jackson Township, the waters never reached the flood stage of 12 feet, cresting at 11.11 feet at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

High water also forced the closure of County Road 50 South over Deer Creek in Marion Township southeast of Fillmore.

Even in Greencastle, water was across Rockville Road on the city’s far west side in one low spot.

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  • So I wonder how many drove around the road closed signs posted? After all that seems to be the way that’s days.

    -- Posted by Simplelife on Wed, Apr 3, 2024, at 7:32 AM
  • disregard and disrespect for authority. Hmmm, wonder where that has been learned?

    -- Posted by beg on Thu, Apr 4, 2024, at 12:03 AM
  • Beg, I’m guessing antifa and the Jan 6 insurrectionists should probably shoulder some of the blame.

    -- Posted by Koios on Thu, Apr 4, 2024, at 8:55 PM
  • Using caution tape to block a road is comical.

    -- Posted by Ben Dover on Thu, Apr 4, 2024, at 9:01 PM
  • Koios,

    You are incorrect from my perspective.

    -- Posted by beg on Thu, Apr 4, 2024, at 11:18 PM
  • I have a healthy disrespect for authority, but enough of a sense of self-preservation to avoid doing *most* stupid things.

    -- Posted by techphcy on Fri, Apr 5, 2024, at 9:25 AM
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