Flood waters force closure of Route 2 in Milton

The town of Milton in Vermont experienced severe flooding on Monday, December 20, 2023, as heavy rain caused the Lamoille River to overflow its banks. The rising water level submerged several low-lying areas and forced the closure of Route 2, a major road that connects Milton with other towns. The Milton Police Department released a statement saying that the road was impassable and advised motorists to use alternative routes. The closure of Route 2 disrupted the traffic and affected the commuters who rely on the road for their daily travel.

The flood waters also entered some homes and businesses in Milton, prompting the authorities to evacuate the residents to safer places. The Milton Fire Department and the Vermont State Police assisted the police in the rescue operations. The fire department posted on its Facebook page that it had rescued several people and animals from the flooded areas. Some residents said that they had never seen such a high water level in the river and that they were worried about the damage to their properties.

Flood waters force closure of Route 2 in Milton
Flood waters force closure of Route 2 in Milton

Flood warning issued for other areas

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning for several areas along the Lamoille River, including Fairfax, Cambridge, Johnson, and Hyde Park. The warning said that the river was expected to crest at 14.5 feet by Monday evening, which is above the flood stage of 13 feet. The weather service urged the people living near the river to be alert and prepared for possible flooding. The flood warning was in effect until Tuesday morning, as the rain was forecast to continue until then.

Governor declares state of emergency

Governor Phil Scott declared a state of emergency for the affected areas and said that he was closely monitoring the situation. He said that he had directed the state agencies to provide all the necessary assistance to the local authorities and the residents. He also thanked the first responders and the volunteers for their efforts. He urged the people to stay safe and follow the instructions of the officials.

Climate change blamed for extreme weather events

The flooding in Milton was the latest in a series of extreme weather events that have hit Vermont and other parts of the country in recent months. Many experts have attributed these events to climate change, which has increased the frequency and intensity of storms, droughts, heat waves, and wildfires. They have called for urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the changing climate.

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