River waters receding in Paterson as residents struggle with storm aftermath

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Sunday, January 14, 2024
Raegen Medgie has the story.

NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- The Passaic River has receded from major flood stage down to moderate days after the city of Paterson was battered by storms. However, the lingering effects have dampened the spirit of many storm-weary residents.

The aftermath finds homeowners now pumping out water as neighborhoods remain engulfed by standing water from the Passaic River, which overspilled its banks last week after another round of rain slammed the Tri-State.

Vehicles at an auto body shop were seen sitting under inches of floodwater, while many residents found themselves overcome by frustration.

"You wake up and what you see is just water. It's hard," said one resident. "I rather just relocate my life and live a peaceful life and not deal with this."

Anthoyn Carlo has the latest from Paterson.

The water damage and destruction drew the attention of Gov. Phil Murphy, who surveyed the damage in the area on Saturday and noted the increased frequency and intensity of the storms.

"Shame on us if we don't get ahead of it. We've done a lot over the past six years. But it's quite clear we have more to do," Murphy said.

Earlier this month, Murphy announced $10 million in funding to elevate or buy out flood-insured properties in the areas impacted by recent flooding.

At the Center City Mall, a shop was established to help flood victims get back on their feet.

"That's why we have this pop-up shop, so that anyone unsheltered can shop with dignity," said Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh.

As the flood waters on Bergen Street shrink, some residents suggest building a barrier on the street to prevent river water spilling into their homes.

"It's too many people affected by this," said Luis Cruz, a Paterson resident.


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