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The Winooski River, Winooski, VT, on Friday afternoon. Photo: Sarah Harris
The Winooski River, Winooski, VT, on Friday afternoon. Photo: Sarah Harris

Vermont sees flooding, snow at high elevations

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Sarah Harris
Reporter and Producer

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I drove to southern Vermont today to visit my family and all the rivers were running fast and brown, lapping at the banks. It rained steadily the whole way, and at higher elevations I watched the rain turn to sleet, even snow. The whole state’s in for more biblical weather this weekend.

As of 8:30 p.m. Saturday night, the National Weather Service has issued flood warnings for Chittenden, Lamoille, southern Franklin, Caledonia, Essex, and Orleans counties and flood watches for most of Vermont.

There are river flood warnings for the Missisquoi, Barton, and Connecticut Rivers. The Lamoille River will approach flood stage Sunday morning. 

Green Mountain Power has reported around 3000 power outages, and heavy wet snow falling at high elevations has the potential to down trees and power lines.

WCAX reports that flooding earlier this week  has left some Underhill residents stranded and cut off from the rest of town.

The National Weather Service advises motorists to drive carefully and expect winter road conditions.

You can find a full listing of road closures at 511 VT. Some notable ones: Route 108 in Smugglers Notch closed due to snow accumulation. Route 128 in Essex closed because of high water. Water will begin to approach Route 15 at the Wrong Way Bridge in Cambridge. Route 5 at US/Canada border in Derby closed due to a sink hole.  Vt 65 in Brookfield – floating bridge closed to vehicles. Vt 118 in Belvidere has water over the road. Winter conditions on I-91 in Sheffield.

As for the holiday weekend, graduations have been moved indoors and Memorial Day celebrations have been moved to next week. The Vermont City Marathon will go on tomorrow, but it’ll be wet and cold.

Governor Peter Shumlin said in a press release that “One of the worst parts of this storm is that it’s going to cause problems in the areas that saw flooding yesterday,” While there are no serious problems reported at this point, transportation and emergency crews are monitoring the situation closely and ready to move quickly if significant flooding develops. For now, I am urging Vermonters to avoid driving on water-covered roads, keep an eye on weather reports, and prepare for possible power outages overnight.”

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