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Area flooding as storms move through Chicago

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Flooding is the big concern in Lake County Wednesday night and residents have been stockpiling sandbags for days to prepare for flood warnings now in effect for parts of the Des Plaines and Fox Rivers.

Norm Schubert's front yard is part of the chain o' lakes and his garage already filled with water.

"I've got so many things on your mind," Schubert said. "When's it going to stop? What do you need to do next?"

Neighbor John Annarella isn't much better off.

Wednesday morning, his home was high and dry, but it's now an island surrounded on all sides by water.

"It came up so fast," he said. "Got home from work, and there it was. And the next thing we know, we're sandbagging."

The last time Fox Lake residents saw flooding like this was in August 2007 when several dozen homes ended up under water.

Wednesday night, Fox Lake volunteers were frantically filling sandbags.

They expect to surpass the number they filled six years ago.

"We're looking like we're almost near 2007. Unfortunately, I think it's a carbon copy," said Annette Wolf, Fox Lake emergency coordinator.

"I'm making sure all the pallets get stacked properly and making sure we get them out as quick as possible," said volunteer Alex Polizzi.

The flooding threat extends throughout much of Lake and McHenry Counties.

In Gurnee, sailors from nearby Naval Station Great Lakes were working to save Gurnee Community Church.

"They're young, 20-something, throwing those sandbags like they weigh a pound. So it was fun to watch," said resident Betty Fallos.

Back in Fox Lake, John Annabelle has a long night ahead.

"The sump pumps will be going non-stop," he said. "We'll be dealing with that tonight. I was just down in the crawl space making sure they're all set and ready to go."

In Fox Lake, they are expecting to have 18,000 sandbags filled by Thursday.

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