Woodford County residents clean up from flash flooding

By WEEK Producer

June 24, 2013 Updated Jun 25, 2013 at 12:31 PM CDT

WOODFORD COUNTY, Ill. -- The flood clean-up is just starting in a lot of areas, including Mill Point and Spring Bay. Both communities were hit by flash floods right around sunrise Monday.

Local residents are complaining that it's not just the heavy rains that are the problem.

Within half an hour early Monday morning, people at Mill Point Park Campground say they went from seeing just small puddles to lakes.

A flash flood overwhelmed campers and homeowners and they blame it all on a nearby bridge.

Several years ago, an old wood bridge used to arch up over the creek but Woodford County said the old structure was a safety problem and replaced it with a low-level concrete bridge.

That move wound up creating another problem. Debris now piles up against the bridge after heavy rains, basically creating a dam.

The water then backs up and the creek rapidly overflows its banks.

"They need to redesign that bridge because this can't keep happening. This is terrible," said resident Starlynn Winchell.

The raging waters also tore up much of the road leading up to the bridge.

"It used to be flat road and now it's lifted up and there's mud everywhere. It's a disaster," said resident Reba Webber.

Residents we talked want the bridge replaced, not repaired.

"I just believe they need to figure out a new design for it and get it fixed before this happens too many more times," said resident Eric Crawford.

Meanwhile, there's no estimate on how long it will take to repair or perhaps replace the bridge.