Officials: ‘Unimaginable losses’ for flood victims in Bath

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BATH TWP., Ohio -- Crews were working on Monday to clean up what remains of a bridge on Shaw Road that was washed out three weeks ago by a rain-swollen Yellow Creek.

Storms that swept through northeast Ohio on May 12 sent as much as eight feet of water into some homes.

The creek pushed its way through Bath Township on its way to Cuyahoga Falls creating even more damage there.

Three weeks later, the recovery continues.

Bath Township Administrator Vito Sinopoli said he knows people have sustained unimaginable losses.

"It does not appear at this point that we qualify for any type of FEMA funding, but I have been in contact with the governor's office, and they are evaluating the Summit County declaration of emergency to determine whether or not we might be eligible for some state funding," said Sinopoli.

County crews have been working to clear creek beds of large trees, and other debris washed downstream by the powerful storms so they don't create another problem.

Sinopoli said township crews have been working to help people get access to their homes where roads and bridges were damaged.

"A representative of the Army Corps of Engineers is coming to the township on Thursday of this week to talk about what it is that the Army Corps does and how they can serve as consultants for property owners who have sustained damage. So we are trying to give as much information to residents as we possibly can and guiding them to the resources to help with their losses," said Sinopoli.

People who sustained losses in previous floods say they thought they would never see one again as devastating as this.

"Eleven years ago, twelve years ago we had the hundred year flood, and now they are saying this is another hundred year flood, but it doesn't seem like its been a hundred years," said Molly Eastwood.

Sinopoli said with five inches of rain in a very short period, preparing for just such a flood is virtually impossible.

"Really to prepare and design storm systems that would address this type of flooding would just be completely unrealistic. I think most planners address a ten-year storm at most," said Sinopoli.

For extended coverage on this story, click here.

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