Eastlake Establishes Flood Plan

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(The Chagrin River iced over/Courtesy: The Eastlake Police Department)

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EASTLAKE, Ohio — The people of Eastlake know the routine — watch and wait.

This time of year the Chagrin River gets packed with ice, and with the upcoming temperatures expected to rise well above freezing, that ice is going to melt.

The current water levels are no cause for alarm, but the Eastlake mayor and fire chief want people living along the banks to be aware the river could overflow this weekend.

“We are the emptying point for the Chagrin River, which is about 80 miles, so we get everybody’s ice as it comes down,” Eastlake Fire Chief Ted Whittington said.

Whittington is preparing for another round of possible flooding. The massive blocks of ice are expected to melt as the weekend temperatures venture far above freezing.

“Anybody along the river, just know that this weekend there is a potential for some issues, so just keep an eye on it,” he said.

“The situation looks a lot worse than it really is at this point,” Eastlake Mayor Dennis Morley said.

Lake Erie is frozen, but the mouth of the river is not.  The water is still flowing beneath the ice chunks on the Chagrin River as well.

The mayor and fire chief are keeping a close watch – just in case.

“We always look at the worst and hope for the best,” Morley said.

If the threat of flooding increases, Eastlake residents will be notified by a reverse 911 system, Morley said.

City leaders plan to meet again later on Friday to go over a plan in case flooding occurs.

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