Rains shut down roads, Metra lines, MCC
Wednesday morning's rain caused several road closures, left McHenry County beaches on high alert for increased bacteria and resulted in more than 100 people without power in Crystal Lake.
And that was only the beginning.
Firefighters from the Cary Fire Protection District also rescued about a half-dozen people from vehicles trapped in high water, Deputy Fire Chief Brad Delatorre said.
Residents also had to contend with flooded basements -- there were at least 10 in town, Delatorre said.
The water primarily affected people living in the subdivisions on Route 14, especially in the lower-lying areas.
"We had flooded areas today that we had not had in the past," Delatorre said. "Some areas were new to us, especially Route 14 and Cary/Algonquin Road, which has never flooded in the past."
A section of railroad track along Bay Road was washed out by the heavy rains.
The weather halted afternoon service on the McHenry Sub-District line, which is an offshoot of the Union Pacific Northwest Line. It runs three inbound trains and three outbound trains every weekday from Crystal Lake to McHenry, with no stops in between.
Metra reported late Wednesday night that service on the line had been fully restored and trains will operate on schedule today.
Lake in the Hills was spared the worst of the rain, but village officials closed Ken Carpenter Park, Indian Trail Beach and Butch Hagele Beach on Wednesday because of high water.
Village Administrator Gerald Sagona said the ground is flooded in all three areas, forcing their temporary closure.
"We expect that it's going to recede in the next day or so," Sagona said.
Ken Carpenter Park is at the corner of Randall and Miller roads while the two beaches surround Woods Creek Lake. Indian Trail Beach is at 228 Indian Trail and Butch Hagele Beach is at 71 Hilltop Drive.
Sagona said Lake in the Hills was also spared April's heavy flooding that created emergency situations elsewhere in McHenry County.
"We just feel for our neighbors that they're getting inundated so much more than we are," Sagona said.
The heavy rains left all of McHenry County's public beaches on a heavy rain advisory, due to a risk of high E. coli counts from the storms. The McHenry Department of Health asks that residents avoid the water for two to three days after the storms. Weather permitting, the beaches will be retested for E. coli today and the results will be posted Friday on the health department's website.
In Crystal Lake, the floods left 140 customers without power, according to a news release.
Power was expected to be restored by the end of the day Wednesday.
The high water closed roads in Fox River Grove. They include Route 22 and Doyle Road. The downpour also closed several conservation areas in McHenry County.
They include the Fox Bluff Conservation Area and the Lyons Prairie and Marsh Conservation Area, both in Cary and Stickney Run Conservation in McHenry.
Meanwhile, McHenry County College was closed all day Wednesday. The first floors of two of its Crystal Lake campus buildings were flooded, but Chief Communications Officer Christina Haggerty said there was no damage and the campus would reopen today.
The college had planned a community forum Wednesday evening at its Shah Center in McHenry but postponed the event because of flooding on north-south roads leading to the building.