Central Virginia is finally drying out after it was pounded by heavy rain Thursday and into Friday morning. Throughout the region, portions of entire roads and fields are under water.
Proffit Road near the intersection with Polo Grounds Road is closed Friday night. Crews say someone tried to cross there early Friday morning and had to be rescued.
In a lot of places around the region, flooding actually got worse after the rain storm moved out. Emergency personnel are warning drivers to still be careful, saying even a small amount of water in the road can be a big problem.
“Just because it's nice and sunny now and rain has stopped, we still have waters that are rising, definitely not a good time to be playing in the river. I wouldn't go play in the Rivanna or James River because that water's going to be moving super-fast,” said Kirby Felts, emergency management coordinator for Albemarle County.
Felts says her crews are dealing with more than 40 obstructions in roads across the region, such as standing water, flooding or roadblocks like trees.
Dispatchers from the Virginia Department of Transportation across central Virginia have also had a busy day. They've had to work on nearly 100 different secondary roads, and once the water levels go down, they still have to check and make sure the roads are in good shape.
For one neighborhood in Greene County, the aftereffects of Thursday night’s storm have some people very concerned.
Part of Rocky Road outside of Stanardsville collapsed from the stress. About half of that road fell into the Conway River. Now neighbors are worried emergency services like fire trucks and ambulances won't be able to reach them.
Neighbors say this isn't the first time the road has been damaged. Shawn Hill, who lives down the street from the collapse, says the neighborhood faced similar challenges several years ago following a hurricane. After that, he says neighbors were stuck with around a $100,000 bill for repairs.
And because Rocky Road isn't owned by the county, they had to find alternate types of funding.
"It took us about three years to get the funding available to repair it to what it is now, until this morning. So, we had to get grants from the county, the state, and I think federal money, as well as the homeowners association,” Hill said.
Hill also says, thanks to all of these storms, he has lost several feet off of his property line to the river.
In the short term, neighbors say they are going to need to gain approval from the person who owns the land the road collapsed on. Then they'll need to clear trees and lay gravel so cars can once again pass safely.
Near Scottsville Friday morning, rescue crews saved a motorist near who was trapped in his car surrounded by high water.
It happened around 3 a.m. on Rolling Road. The water was an estimated six feet deep when the man who was delivering newspapers says he drove into it, and his car was washed away. Rescue crews from Albemarle County, Charlottesville, and Lake Monticello were called in to pull him out.
His car is totaled.
Virginia Department of Transportation Press Release
CULPEPER — Eighty roads in the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Culpeper District remain closed this afternoon due to flooding or fallen trees. One primary highway, Route 20 between Route 53 (Thomas Jefferson Parkway) and Route 1150 (Mill Creek Drive) south of Charlottesville, is also closed to through traffic after a pipe that carries water underneath the road failed. The resulting washout damaged the pavement and roadbed.
The number of secondary road closures, which now stands at 79, will change overnight and through the weekend as the floodwaters recede. VDOT crews will check the roads for damage and reopen them once they are determined to be safe for travel. A crew will begin repairs on Route 20 as soon as the water level drops but that road may remain closed through the weekend.
Motorists should use extreme caution while driving on secondary roads near streams and rivers overnight. The water is still rising in some locations, and even when the water begins to recede there may be unseen damage to the pavement underneath the water.
VDOT urges that motorists remember:
· Never drive through water flowing across a road. It takes only six to 12 inches of water to float a small vehicle.
· Never drive around barricades. Remember, the road has been closed for your safety. Turn around, don’t drown.
· Slow down when driving through standing water. Driving too fast through water could cause loss of control due to hydroplaning.
· Avoid flood-prone areas, especially along creeks and other low-lying areas.
· If a flash flood warning is broadcast, seek high ground immediately.
· Watch for debris on the roadway. If you encounter a fallen power line, do not try to move the line.
Drivers can check VDOT’s traffic information web site, www.511Virginia.org, for information on the road closures as well as real-time road and weather conditions, live traffic camera images for many major highways, including Interstate 64, I-66 and Routes 29 and 250 in Central Virginia. Motorists can call 511 from any telephone in Virginia for road and traffic conditions on all major highways in the state. Call 800-367-7623 24 hours a day to report highway-related problems or request information about Virginia’s highways.
Heavy Rains Cause Flooding throughout Central VAMore>>
Sean Cudahy joined the NBC29 news team as a general assignment reporter in April 2014. Full Story
Sean Cudahy joined the NBC29 news team as a general assignment reporter in April 2014. Sean returns to Charlottesville after four years at American University in Washington, D.C., but central Virginia is his home. He grew up in Albemarle County, graduating from Albemarle High School in 2010. Email/Follow on Twitter/ Full Story