Flooding closes East Coast highways

Sept. 9, 2011
Major highways throughout the Northeast were closed due to flooding Thursday in the wake of the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee that dumped more rain in areas still recovering from Hurricane Irene

Major highways throughout the Northeast were closed due to flooding Thursday in the wake of the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee that dumped more rain in areas still recovering from Hurricane Irene.

More than 100,000 residents of Wilkes-Barre, PA, were evacuated as the Susquehanna River rose, according to a report by the Huffington Post. At Binghamton, N.Y., the river flowed over retaining walls downtown, closing Interstate 88. About 80 mi. downstream in Wilkes-Barre, the river was projected to crest at 41 ft. — the same height as the levee system.

The National Weather Service predicted 4 to 10 in. of rain across the mid-Atlantic and Northeast through Thursday. Flood watches and warnings were in effect from Maryland to New England. The service said the river level in Binghamton is above 25 ft. — 11 ft. above flood stage — and is expected to rise another foot or so.

Following are just some of the roadways hit by flooding:

• In New Jersey, Lee is expected to drop anywhere from 2 to 5 more inches of rain causing heavier flooding and closing roads and highways around the region.

• In Philadelphia, flooding and a rockslide closed the eastbound lanes of the Schuylkill Expressway.

• Flash flooding shut down a bridge spanning the Delaware River between New Hope, Pa., and Lambertville, N.J., Thursday morning.

• The New York Thruway Authority planned to close a 105-mi. stretch of Interstate 90 — the state’s most heavily traveled east-west highway — where it runs along the Mohawk River.

• Prattsville, NY, was cut off on Wednesday afternoon, its main roads covered with water from flooding.

About the Author

Deborah Whistler

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