Rain causes flooding and evacuations in Oneida County

Flooding at a mobile home park in Chadwicks / photo: Brian Erb

People who live in the Oneida County village of Chadwicks are busy cleaning up after heavy rain caused flooding in the area.

One of the hardest hit areas in Central New York was in Oneida County. Flood waters severely hit the town of Chadwicks just south of New Hartford, damaging dozens of homes.

One trailer park finally saw the water retreat overnight, but the floods left a trail of mud behind.

22 homes were without power Monday afternoon, and ten were damaged by the water. Some residents are now waiting for their homes to pass inspection before they can return.

The park TMs owner, Erik Cusworth, couldn TMt believe what he was seeing.

I've never seen the water come up like that before he said. Yesterday it was just here to stay.

Resident Jack Vincent was left wondering what he was supposed to do while he waits for the inspectors.

How can my home be condemned in a brand new trailer? he says.

16 homes in the park were declared unsafe. The gas and electric lines could be disconnected for up to two weeks while engineers inspect the homes to make sure they are habitable.

Sunday afternoon the Sauquoit Creek overflowed, and water filled backyards. At some houses, homeowners were dealing with several feet of water in their basements.

Tony Voce, who lives on Oneida Street in Chadwicks, says he took down part of his fence in his backyard so the water would have somewhere to go.

"At its worst, it's probably about four and a half feet of water, and it's just rushing," says Voce. "It really just becomes part of the river."

Rain fell steadily through Sunday afternoon. Neighbors say they started noticing problems around 1:00 p.m. Emergency crews were on scene to help. Firefighters checked power boxes throughout the neighborhood to make sure the rising water wouldn't cause a hazard.

Some Oneida County residents had to evacuate as streets were closed. The Mobile Manor mobile home park was also evacuated.

"I came out, and I came up to the bridge, and the water was just gushing over the bridge," says Daniel Gossin, who lives at Mobile Manor. "I came back five minutes later, literally five minutes later, and it was completely flooded. I couldn't get back in there."

All streets in Utica including, Brookline Drive, were back open Sunday night.

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