Flooding Closes Interstate, Leaves Village Submerged

LIMA, Ohio (AP) - A seven-mile stretch of Interstate 75 was closed due to flooding Tuesday morning, and motorists were cautioned about water on roads throughout northern Ohio as rain lingered in areas that had already received several inches since Monday.

The National Weather Service issued flood warnings and watches from counties west and south of Toledo all the way east to Youngstown and Steubenville.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol said high water on the highway led troopers to shut down I-75 in northwest Ohio between Beaverdam and Bluffton, diverting traffic onto State Route 235 and U.S. 30. There was no immediate word on how long the interstate would remain closed.

Just east of that area, the sheriff's office urged motorists to stay out of Wyandot County because of extensive flooding after more than 8 inches of rain fell, Lt. Neil Riedlinger said.

Throughout the county, authorities were busy Tuesday rescuing motorists whose vehicles had become submerged and residents who had water coming into their homes.

The downtown in the village of Carey was under about three feet of water, and the Carey Nursing & Rehabilitation Center was evacuated, Riedlinger said.

An aide answering the phone at the home Tuesday morning said 28 residents were being transferred to Wyandot Memorial Hospital.

More than 2 inches of rain fell Monday in Cleveland, pushing the month's total over 8 inches and breaking the August record of 6.36 inches set in 1919.

Parts of northeast Ohio got nearly 5 inches. The downpour left basements and low-lying roads and parking lots swamped.

Near Akron, teachers preparing for the opening of Norton's Cornerstone Elementary School ended up heaving sandbags for a while to hold back floodwaters from the doorway.

The American Red Cross opened emergency shelters for people forced to leave their homes because of flooded basements in the Akron area.