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midland flooding

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

People living near the Edenville Dam will get an update Thursday night on state plans to make repairs to a portion of the dam that didn't fail in May.

Days of heavy rain led to the Edenville dam to fail back in May. Flood waters that washed through the breach inundated communities downstream, doing tens of millions of dollars in damage.

flooded street in Midland
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Two companies are facing a lawsuit after a COVID-19 outbreak among workers who helped with re-building efforts in Midland and Bay counties.

Servpro Industries and BTN Services brought the workers from Florida to mid-Michigan after this spring’s catastrophic floods.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A new report says Michigan should invest more money and hire more staff in its dam safety office.

The failure of two dams back in May and the resulting record flooding along the Tittabawassee River led the state to commission an analysis of Michigan’s dam safety program. The analysis was made by experts from the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO).

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A new special task force will meet for the first time Tuesday to review state policy in the wake of the failure of two dams back in May.

More than ten thousand people were forced to evacuate following the failure of the Edenville and Sanford dams. The dams failed after days of heavy rain.

Thousands of homes and businesses in parts of Gladwin, Midland and Saginaw counties were damaged or destroyed in the 500 year flood event.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The state will try to order the company that owns the Edenville and Sanford Dams to fix failures that caused extensive flooding along the Tittawabassee River in May.

That action was announced Tuesday by the state Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE).

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The state will spearhead an engineering study to assess the condition of the remainder of a Midland County dam that failed in May.

The Edenville dam partially collapsed after heavy rains, along with the Sanford dam, leading to major flooding in and around Midland. But part of the dam facing the Tobacco River is still intact. The question is how stable and secure it is.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A workers’ rights group is asking the state of Michigan to step up protections for workers who may be exposed to COVID-19. That's after dozens of people brought in to clean up flood damage in Midland tested positive for the virus.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan election officials are encouraging voters to cast absentee ballots to reduce their potential exposure to COVID-19. 

But flooding last month has complicated those efforts in Midland County.  

The May 19 flood damaged or destroyed hundreds of homes and businesses. More than 10,000 people were forced to evacuate. Some Midland county residents are still living in campers, tents or with friends and relatives.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is asking for a federal major disaster declaration for five Michigan counties still recovering from May floods.

In her letter to President Donald Trump, Gov. Whitmer says Midland, Gladwin, Iosco, Saginaw, and Arenac counties suffered a quarter billion dollars (at least $190 million for residents and over $55 million public infrastructure) in damage from flooding last month.

Michelle Hurd Riddick (used with permission)

The two dams that broke near Midland caused a massive flood that swept away bridges, roads, and damaged a lot of property. Because Midland is home to Dow’s original chemical complex, a lot of people were concerned about hazardous waste or waste in ponds at Dow.

flooded street in Midland
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, we touched base with agriculture workers, and what some farmers are doing to keep their seasonal employees safe. Plus, writer Donavan Hohn talks about the inner coast explored in his new essay collection.

(Subscribe to Stateside on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or with this RSS link)

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has ordered a state investigation into why two privately owned dams failed last week in Midland County contributing to record flooding.

After the Edenville and Sanford Dams failed, thousands were forced to evacuate and many towns along the Tittabawassee River suffered extensive damage.

a house with flood waters covering law and driveway
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Four Midland County homeowners have filed a class action lawsuit against the state of Michigan. The lawsuit alleges the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) knew about the issues with the Edenville Dam, but did not take action.

Gladwin County residents advised to avoid empty Wixom Lake

May 26, 2020
drone footage of wixom lake
Clinton Snider for Michigan Radio

Curious Gladwin County residents are being advised to stay out of the bed of the now-empty Wixom Lake.

County health and law enforcement officials held a press conference to update residents on clean up efforts underway after the collapse of the Edenville dam.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Contractors are busy repairing damage from last week’s record flood in Midland County.

Many are also victims of the flood themselves.

Clinton Snider / clintonsnider.com

This drone video was shot Friday May 22, 2020  at 7 p.m.

It was three days after the Edenville Dam collapsed due to high water.

flood waters by a home with for lease sign in front
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

The Michigan Ground Water Association is urging private well owners to have their wells inspected if they live in an area that was flooded this week.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s two U.S. Senators are calling for more regulation of privately owned dams, in the wake of this week’s massive flood on the Tittabawassee River.

Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters toured the flood zone Saturday by air and on the ground with local officials and FEMA’s regional administrator.

The failure of two privately owned dams Tuesday, after days of heavy rain, helped create the record setting flood on the Tittabawassee River that forced thousands to evacuate, and damaged homes, businesses, roads and bridges. 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

FEMA’s regional administrator says his office will not be conducting the usual door-to-door assessment of flood damage in Midland County.

Last Tuesday, two dams failed after days of heavy rain, unleashing damaging floods along the Tittabawassee River.    

The flood forced thousands to evacuate in the city of Midland. It also devastated the small community of Sanford. 

State of Michigan

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has expanded the state of emergency declaration for this week’s devastating floods to include Arenac, Gladwin, and Saginaw Counties.

The original declaration covered only Midland County.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Many people in Midland County will be spending their Memorial Day holiday weekend cleaning up from this week’s massive flood.

It’s the very beginning of a process that may take months or years to restore or rebuild.

R&R Auto Sales in Midland after the flood
Ben Thorp / WCMU

Mid-Michigan residents are beginning to take stock of the damage wrought by historic floods.

The small village of Sanford has just over 800 residents. It lies just upstream from Midland along the Tittabawassee River.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

President Donald Trump has signed an emergency declaration for the communities struck by flooding this week in Michigan.

Two dams failed after heavy rains, swelling the Tittabawassee River to a record crest in the city of Midland.  The declaration only covers Midland County. 

A red bridge flooded in Midland
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announces loosened restrictions on some Michigan businesses and small gatherings just in time for the holiday weekend. Plus, we'll hear about the environmental threats posed by massive flooding in Midland County this week. 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A dwindling number of people remain in flood evacuation centers in Midland County.

Thousands of Midland county residents were ordered to evacuate their homes after a pair of dams failed after days of heavy rain earlier this week. Many are still waiting for the waters to recede. 

National Weather Service

Flood waters have crested in Midland, but the cleanup will have to wait until the waters recede.

In Midland, the Tittabawassee River crested Wednesday at 35 feet — a record, but not as bad as first feared. Projections on Tuesday put the expected crest at 38 feet.

New Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter
Dave Coulter for State Representative

As Michigan moves more toward re-opening its economy, Oakland County says it will now test anyone 18 or older for COVID-19.

Oakland County has drive-thru testing at three places in Pontiac, Southfield, and Novi. Starting now, any adult who wants to get tested there can do so.