NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Heavy rain overwhelmed the stormwater system in New Haven Tuesday, sending water up out of manholes on Union Avenue. Flooding in low-lying areas of New Haven is not unusual in major rainstorms, but major rainstorms have become pretty unusual this year.
“We registered 4 plus inches of rain in downtown New Haven at City Hall on our rain monitor,” explained New Haven Emergency Operations Director Rick Fontana. “That amount of rain, a short period of time, creates a lot of challenges for the city.”
It shut down Brewery Street for a while, the water becoming too dangerous to drive through. That came too late for one small sedan that got stuck.
“We are encouraging people to slow down, turn their headlights on,” said Sgt. Christine Jeltima, spokesperson for the Connecticut State Police. “We know visibility is low due to the amount of rain that is out there.”
News 8 was driving around this morning and found a flooded road and recorded an SUV making the right decision, according to state police, and turning around.
“Do not drive through it. You don’t know how your car will be capable of handling that water,” Jeltima said. “Stop, call 911. If there are barriers out for a roadway closure, don’t go around those barriers.”
All over the state, authorities are watching rivers like the Quinnipiac in Wallingford, slowly rising all morning. As the rain continues, more water will flow into the major rivers, with the potential for major flooding.
Back in New Haven, where streets looked like rivers Tuesday morning, part of the problem was the timing.
“High tide at 8 a.m. this morning, the water doesn’t have any place to go,” Fontana said. “We’re starting to see some of the water recede in some of the areas.”
The problem is that New Haven will get another high tide at 8 p.m. Tuesday. If the rain keeps up, we will see more flooding then.
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