BRISTOL, Conn. (WTNH) — The city of Bristol is seeing major flooding as Ida brought heavy rain to Connecticut overnight Thursday.
Bristol Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu said to avoid Forestville Center since the Pequabuck River has overflowed.
Around 28 people living near the Pequabuck had to be evacuated by boat overnight, the mayor told News 8.
Bristol’s drainage system was just completely overwhelmed by these remnants left behind from Ida as they moved through Connecticut. People in the area around Farmington Avenue and Mix Street tell us they haven’t seen anything like this since Hurricane Irene.
Travis Roy of Bristol said, “It’s not as bad as Irene. But a close second.”
This isn’t the first time Roy has seen Farmington Avenue flooded at Mix Street. But the last time it was this bad: 10 years ago.
“Normally it’s probably at least five-six feet lower than what it is. I mean you can walk in it. Ankle deep maybe. Right now, that’s over your head,” Roy explained.
The banks of the Copper Mine Brook have also overflowed, causing flooding on Mix Street at Route 6. The road is closed at this time. Officials warn residents to avoid driving in standing water.
Mayor Zoppo-Sassu says Bristol is also taking in water coming from wooded areas in Burlington.
“The intensity of the storm and the frequency of them has been an issue,” the mayor said.
River overflow from the brook and the Pequabuck River left cars stranded and forced fire crews to use boats to evacuate about two dozen people in the Forestville section. Floodwater also moved into basements of homes surrounding those bodies of water.
Roy added, “I had about three inches of water in my basement. My sump pump quit…We’ve been drying out the basement ever since. Vacuums, just everything we can do to get it all cleaned up. Soon as 6 a.m. rolled around I was at Lowes gathering a new sump pump.”
Police and fire blocked off roads to prevent people from driving into moving water. Still, someone did just that during our interview with the mayor.
“We are strongly encouraging people to not drive through water it is much deeper than it looks,” Mayor Zoppo-Sassu urged.
Despite seeing cones in the road, we’ve still seen people drive into floodwaters and get stuck. So, if you see anything like this, stop and turn around.
The Bristol Fire Department will be available to pump out basements on Thursday for those with six inches of water or more, just call 860-584-3011 for assistance and more information.
News 8 will update this story as more information comes in.