Flood waters shut down western Pennsylvania businesses, forcing some from homes

PITTSBURGH — Parts of western Pennsylvania went underwater Tuesday and Wednesday as soaking rain caused rivers to rise.


PHOTOS: Heavy rain floods Pittsburgh region

Severe Weather Team 11 got out into the communities impacted by this record-level rain.

A look at flooding conditions in Crescent, Moon townships

In Crescent Township, the Ohio River is around 23 feet and is expected to crest around 25 feet. The Army Corps of Engineers says it’s similar to the spring rainfall we experienced in 2018. People are still taking precautions.

“Everyone’s down here trying to pull out their campers,” said Tina Yeater. “Their picnic tables and their decks.”

At Glenwillard Boat Club in Crescent Township, people secured camping equipment.

“It’s come up three feet since we’ve been here because we usually mark the ramp when we get here,” said Yeater.

They tied their docks up and moved their campers.

“We’ve been here before,” said Yeater. “It’s taken the roofs off our buildings.”

Just up the road, a slide impacted this home by dislodging the back deck. Officials say as a precaution they advised the residents to leave, and St. Catherine of Siena Church posted on Facebook saying due to recent storms and flooding there will be no mass from April 4-10.

In Moon Township, a landslide is still impacting University Boulevard. The lane heading up the hill from Stoops Ferry Road to Hertz is closed.  PennDOT says the slide is still moving.  Because of that, it will stay closed overnight, and they’ll re-evaluate things in the morning.

And in Coraopolis, Montour Street is still down to one lane because of a slide.  PennDOT closed a lane of traffic in December but decided to close both lanes on Tuesday in case the road shifted even more.

PennDOT says after further geotechnical investigation work, the department will be moving forward with designing a full construction project due to the size and potential scope of work.  There is not a timeline for that project currently.

With more rain in the forecast, more slides are anticipated, and people close to the creeks and rivers will be watching and waiting for them to crest.

Beaver County communities experience flooding, landslide reported in Independence

This afternoon, Danny English made it his priority to check out the creek that flows near Park Road in Independence Township.

“I just had to drive around to take pictures of it to send everyone around the country, a little Facebook thing or something like that,” English said.

Part of the rural road was blocked off in several locations, and emergency crews were there to make sure drivers didn’t try to make it through the high water.

In addition to the flooding, a landslide shut down Service Creek Road in Independence Township.

Channel 11 saw mud and trees falling down the hillside.

And, in Ellwood City, more high water that could pose a danger if cars risk driving through it.

Several roads in Beaver County are still shut down. Click here for live updates.

Butler County coffee shop floods, forced to close

A tree came crashing down on Route 8 near Prospect Road in Brady Township around 6:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Fire officials say the tree was hit simultaneously by a Slippery Rock school bus and a tri-axle truck.

The district says no students were on board, but a driver and adult bus monitor were injured and taken to the hospital.

Elsewhere in the county, flooding has been the primary concern.

“Our little town definitely got hit pretty hard but we’re just hoping for the best. Hopefully, the rain stops at some point and we can start the cleanup,” said Seth Murphy, the owner of Wunderbar Coffee and Crepes in Harmony, Butler County.

Murphy says the shop’s basement is flooded and the business was forced to close Wednesday.

“It does flood on occasion there. This is probably one of, if not the worst one, in at least modern times,” Murphy said.

In the Renfrew area of Penn Township, Butler County, it was a similar scene.

Main Street looked like a lake, with water spilling over the banks of the Connoquenessing Creek and taking over a park and pickleball court.

“I didn’t think it’d be this bad. I was kind of surprised,” said Art Black, who was braving the weather to head to the post office.

The flood waters forced him to park in the middle of Main Street and climb over the post office railing to reach the door.

He says this is the worst flood he’s seen since this same post office took on water in 2004.

“It was up to the roof of the post office once. That was the worst,” Black said.

But residents like Bill McDonough say people in Renfrew have gotten used to the Connoquenessing Creek flooding like this every five or six years.

“This is just part of life out here in Renfrew, that’s all,” McDonough said.

Even so, he believes Wednesday’s flooding is the worst since that major flood 20 years ago.

“This is the worst it’s been since I moved in here,” said McDonough.

Youghiogheny River swells in Fayette County, forcing some from their homes

Families who live along the Youghiogheny River had a busy morning and afternoon Wednesday, racing against time as the river started to rise.

“Just worried. Really worried,” said Tanner Jarmon.

Jarmon lives in Sutersville with his mom, dad, and brother.

“In our home right now we have our basement completely, well, not completely, there’s about three steps left in our basement. We’re anticipating there’s going to be more water in there so we’re just hoping it’s not past ankle/knee-high level on the first floor,’ Jarmon told Channel 11′s Andrew Havranek. “That’s all we can hope for at this point.”

They’ve moved as many valuable and sentimental belongings to higher ground – and are leaving for the night.

“I think we’re going to go to a hotel room and honestly,” Jarmon said. “Wait this out for the next like day or so and see what happens.”

Down river in Connellsville, it was more of the same.

Kelly Gallo said she has never seen flooding like this at her home since she moved there in 2005.

Gallo and her husband had three feet of water in their basement. They had to get a second pump and now only have a few inches inside their house.

“If we get more rain and the water comes up, who knows what’s going to happen,” Gallo said. “That’s what we’re worried about.”

While Gallo was speaking to Channel 11, firefighters helped one woman out of her SUV after she drove past the barricades and got stuck in several feet of water.

A neighbor parked his truck in the road so others couldn’t do the same thing.

“Connellsville is a small town but we come together when the going gets tough,” Gallo said.

The National Weather Service forecasts the Youghiogheny River to crest in Sutersville at 24 feet by 8 p.m. Wednesday. In Connellsville, the Youghiogheny River reached a crest of 14.76 feet at 3 p.m.

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