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Residents Battle Flooded Basements, Roads; Algonquin Declares State of Emergency

The Fox River in Algonquin is expected to continue to rise in the coming day, causing issues for those living in the area. Village officials are urging motorists to avoid the downtown area.

Widespread flooding Thursday left its mark on the area and could continue to wreak havoc for some McHenry County residents as we head into the weekend — especially those living near the Fox River in Algonquin. 

The village of Algonquin declared a state of emergency Thursday afternoon as the Fox River rose above its flood stage of 9.5 feet to 11.9 feet. The waters are expected to crest at 14 feet on Saturday before starting to recede. McHenry County also declared a state of emergency Thursday. 

  • Flooding: Water Level at Fox River

With more flooding expected, police are urging motorists to avoid the downtown Algonquin area. 

“We don’t want people near the river getting sucked in and there’s water on the streets,” said Michael Kumbera, Algonquin's assistant village manager.

The flooding has left many in neighborhoods surrounding the Fox River with standing water in their basements. 

Stefanie Haut, who lives on La Fox River Drive in Algonquin, has eight inches of water in her basement, according to a comment on the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Patch Facebook page. 

"(My) backyard is now the river," according to Haut. 

The Algonquin Public Works Department has made sandbags available to residents at the following locations: Hubbard Street and Oceola Drive, Rattray Drive and Beach Drive, Rattray Drive and Filip Road, Center Street and Willow Street, LaFox River Drive at Cornish Park and Riverfront Park. 

The village has been working with the Salvation Army Civil Air Patrol and Algonquin Explorers to make sandbags for residents. As of Wednesday, 2,000 sandbags had been made available to residents. 

  • READ MORE: Sandbags Available for Algonquin Residents

In Lake in the Hills, officials responded to around 30 calls for assistance as of 5 a.m. Thursday and placed 3,000 sandbags at locations throughout the village, according to an e-mail from village administrator Gerald Sagona to department heads and elected officials, which was provided to Patch. 

Public works employees worked Thursday to inspect detention ponds, dams and monitor Lake in the Hills water system, according to the e-mail, which was sent late Thursday morning.

The Woods Creek Dam rose at about an inches per hour Thursday morning and two village detention ponds were overflowing as of late Thursday morning, according to the e-mail from Sagona that was provided to Patch. 

  • LOOK: Share Your McHenry County Flood Photos on Patch

Flooding: Road Issues, Parks Closed

From early Thursday morning into the night, heavy rains caused flooding on local roads, interstates and regional highways. Nearly five inches of rain had fallen within 24 hours as of Thursday morning in Algonquin, according to the National Weather Service. 

  • READ MORE: Rainfall Totals in Chicago

In Algonquin, Route 62 between Pyott Road and Route 31 closed for much of the day because of standing water near the Western Bypass construction site. Crews worked to pump water out of the roadway, which had reopened as of Thursday night. 

“We are monitoring the construction site making sure the pumps are working. Hopefully it will hold out for the peak” rush hour, Kumbera said.

  • READ MORE: Flooding Closes Area Roads

Meanwhile, major interstates in the Chicago area closed due to standing water throughout the day on Thursday and a sinkhole on the south side of Chicago swallowed a car Thursday morning. 

  • MAP: Flooded Roads Throughout the Chicago Area

Parks in Algonquin and Lake in the Hills also closed Thursday due to flooding, including Ken Carpenter Park in Lake in the Hills and Cornish Park in Algonquin. 

The McHenry County Conservation District also listed several closings Thursday. Stickney Run, HUM Trail and horse trails at Rush Creek, Glacial Park and Highlands/Lyonswere closed due to flooding, according to the MCCD website. 

In addition, the Pioneer Road landing at the Nippersink Canoe base was closed until further notice due to high waters. 

Weather Forecast in Coming Days

A flood warning is in effect through 7:30 a.m. Friday for McHenry County with a 40 percent chance of showers on Friday, according to the National Weather Service. 

There is no rain in the forecast for Algonquin on Saturday and a 20 percent chance of showers on Sunday. Temperatures are expected to drop on Friday with a high near 44 degrees. On Saturday and Sunday, temperatures in the 40s are expected. 

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