Crews rescue residents from flooded homes in Paterson, New Jersey

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Saturday, January 13, 2024
Flooding in New Jersey expected to get worse with more rain
Josh Einiger has the latest from Little Falls.

NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- The flooding situation along the Passaic River in New Jersey is expected to get worse with more rain on the way.

It's the second time in about three weeks that the river has flooded its banks -- sending water rushing into neighborhoods.

Rescue crews evacuated people from their homes as flood waters rose in Paterson and Little Falls on Friday after the river breached its banks the day before.

NewsCopter 7 was over Paterson on Friday morning as crews helped three people escape the rising flood waters.

John Del Giorno has the exclusive.

Much of New Jersey is under a flood watch or flood warning ahead of more rain on Friday night.

Paterson and Little Falls residents are feeling both pain and pressure from those high flood waters, which have spilled into their backyards, basements, and streets.

There were more than a dozen street closures in Paterson on Friday, where Mayor Andre Sayegh had urged people to leave the area or head to a shelter site.

"Yesterday we had 12 rescue operations. You had localized flooding and you had people disregarding the barricades and driving into the water. Turn around, don't drown. That's what has to happen amongst individuals who choose to drive in this climate," Sayegh said.

Over in Little Falls, water streamed down local streets there in low-lying areas, even submerging cars underwater. Officials say it is extremely dangerous for residents to try driving through high water levels.

"As of this year this is the second time it's been this bad," said one resident.

Other residents in the area say this is the worst flooding they've seen since Hurricane Ida.

"You wake up, the electricity is shot. Now you gotta wait for them to repair the electricity," said Robert Brown. "You're in a hotel. It's very inconvenient."

Of course, this all comes weeks after Tuesday's major winter storm dumped a dose of rain heavy enough to prompt those concerns about crest levels.

Raegen Medgie is in Wayne, NJ with the story.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy was on the ground in the affected areas Thursday and announced help would be on the way in the form of $10 million in funding to elevate or buy out flood insured properties most heavily impacted by flooding last month.

"We're going to turn over every stone we can," said Gov. Murphy. "Whether it's state money, county perhaps."

The Red Cross is reminding residents that there is a shelter at Little Falls Civic Center for those in need.


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