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WATCH: South Bend, IN Mayor Declares Emergency

22 Feb 2018, 3:50 pm

The St. Joseph River in northern Indiana has reached unprecedented levels near South Bend, Indiana. Mayor Pete Buttigieg and the City of South Bend formally declared an emergency Wednesday.

South Bend was forced to close its wastewater treatment plant after it was swamped by flood waters. Untreated sewage water backed up into the river before the facility reopened at limited capacity Thursday morning. The Red Cross has opened 8 shelters in northern Indiana for those forced from their homes. WeatherNation spoke with Mayor Buttgieg about the dangerous situation threatening his city.

Our affiliate WJRT has been following similar flooding in Michigan that has taken the life of a one year old girl. Police say she was found in standing water in her backyard. WJRT is reporting that heavy rains and wintry weather have contributed to at least six other deaths in Illinois, Kansas and Nebraska since Monday.

Upstream on the St. Joseph River in southwest Michigan, the Coast Guard was called in to help evacuate residents. At least 40 people and their pets had to be rescued.

The Mayor of Lansing, Michigan also declared an emergency for his city. At least six neighborhoods were put under voluntary evacuations.

Full interview above with Mayor Andy Schor

For WeatherNation, Meteorologist Karissa Klos