Local

Streets flooded in Chicago's north suburbs

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Another wave of summer storms rolled through the northern suburbs Wednesday morning, flooding an intersection in Wadsworth, forcing at least one motorist to call for help.

This was another one of those fast-moving weather systems that have pounded the Chicago area this summer.

Customers at the Gurnee Mills Mall had to dodge the rain Wednesday morning. Within an hour, it was coming down so fast and hard, streets flowed like rivers. Some vehicles tried to risk it. Others did not.

"It was flooded up...you couldn't even see the street. It was terrible," said Gurnee resident Caryn Redford.

Especially terrible for those who got stuck in it. In Wadsworth, a driver had to be rescued from her submerged car at Route 173 and Delany Road. A tow truck pulled the car with the driver and passengers still inside. Firefighters didn't want to risk rescuing the people in the water. They determined it was safer to leave the occupants inside.

"You can't drive through it even though it looks you can pass through. Water can actually move the vehicles and put them in a worse situation. People are taking their life in their hands," said Newport Fire Protection District Chief Mark Kirschhoffer.

By noon, much of the water had receded and dried out.

Gurnee resident Freddy Flores spend his afternoon cleaning his flooded basement. The rain was so hard it broke his window well cover and the water came pouring in.

For many in this Lake County suburb, they have had it with bad weather this summer.

"It's been a bad summer. I'd like to have a do-over, starting with the beginning of summer and start all over again. We were without power for three days a couple weeks ago, and then this," said Redford.

"I'm a deep believer in global warming or climate change, and I think that's what it's all about," said Gurnee resident Arnold Catini. "I think we're getting everything more severe, more incredible, more water, more snow, more everything."

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