Flash Floods Chew Away Vt. Roads

The flood damage impacted some people's ability to get home Tuesday evening, the police chief in Richmond, Vermont said

Flash flooding brought on by two days of rain, particularly heavy Tuesday afternoon, caused damage to public roads and private property in parts of Chittenden County, Vermont.

On Dugway Road in Richmond, Vermont, sections of the road were left a messy bog of mug and large rocks. Large parts of the road surface washed away in some places.

Dugway Road resident Ian Bender lost his driveway. "It happens," Bender sighed. "You just have to deal with it."

Bender's neighbor also suffered bad damage, with another driveway washout. A parked car at another home was surrounded by flash floodwaters and mud.

Water raced across sections of nearby Wes White Road, closing that, too. "A lot of people can't get to their houses right now," Richmond Police Chief Al Buck told necn at 7:30 Tuesday evening.

Buck said work to reopen damaged roads was already underway, but noted it won't be easy. In the meantime, he had a plea for drivers in his town and any other community that experiences flash flooding.

"When you see running water across the road, do not drive through it," Buck said. "Stop, turn around, find an alternate route. A few inches of water going over the road can wash your car away; it really can."

In Bolton, the normally calm Joiner Brook roared. The brook runs along the side of the steep Bolton Access Road, heading to the Bolton Valley ski resort. Part of the road fell away to the swollen brook.

That torrent also knocked out the drinking water system for Duncan Galbraith and several of his neighbors. "It's excellent spring water from way up top," Galbraith said. "But it isn't right now!"

This part of the state has seen several flash floods in recent years, Chief Buck noted. But experience doesn't seem to make cleaning up the mess any easier.

"It's pretty crazy," said Shiloh Rutherford, who said she was enjoying a nature walk and swim when the rain hit. "It's intense to have your car stuck and then not be able to get out either way."

As of 9:30 Tuesday night, Duxbury Road and Bolton Notch Road, both in Bolton, remained closed, according to Vermont State Police.

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