Village of Park Ridge declares a disaster, closes most roads to through traffic

PORTAGE COUNTY, Wis. (WSAW) - The Village of Park Ridge, a small municipality within Stevens Point, has declared a disaster due to flooding issues.

In a press release, Village President Randy Busch says they're experiencing high water on roads south of Park Ridge Drive, or Highway 66.

Because of the flooding, they've closed all roads South of Highway 66 to through traffic, to protect village infrastructure and public safety. Residents are still allowed to get to and from their homes.

"Just keep the cars from flying through here too quickly. As deep as the water is, they're going to start drowning cars in it soon if they're not slowing down. And we're also trying to keep it safe for the responders that we have trying to clear the roads at this point," said Lt. Collin Olsen with the Village of Park Ridge Fire Department.

"I've been chief four years and we've never had flooding like this from a spring melt. Residents are frustrated because we can't get enough water off the roads for them. Residents are frustrated because their basements are flooding and we can't fight mother nature so we're doing all we can for them making sure they're safe, but they're definitely wet," said Chief Brian Lepper with the Village of Park Ridge Fire Department.

Busch says about 225 homes are affected and at least half a dozen of them have standing water in their basements.

Septic tanks are being used to try and alleviate some of the flooding. One tank pulled at least 75,000 gallons of water from the roadways.

The Village of Park Ridge Fire Department posted on its Facebook Page that there is a sandbag filling area at the new development site on Green Avenue, between Odessa Court and Highway 66.

They say residents should bring a shovel to fill bags with.