(Host) Road crews are out in force today working to keep roads along Lake Champlain open.
The lake continued rising last night to 3.2 feet above flood stage. National Weather Service forecast predict the lake will crest in the next 24 hours, but may go a few inches higher. And they say it could take weeks for the floodwaters to move out of the lake.
But while the rain has cleared out, the problem is now wind. Deputy Transportation Secretary Sue Minter says, that’s the case on Route 2 where winds are pushing waves onto the road:
(Minter) "The biggest area of concern is the causeway, which of course goes between Milton and the islands. And we are keeping that passable, we have created essentially a breakwater for the causeway on both the south and the north side that is working."
(Host) Minter says the road is open, and hundreds of concrete jersey barriers have been brought in, along with reflective post to help drivers navigate in areas with water on the roads.
Minter says the situation is also difficult in Alburg, but Route 129 has re-opened:
(Minter) "These southerly winds are effecting Route 129 with a lot of debris, so our workers are out actually plowing off the debris to keep that road passable."
Officials are asking drivers to avoid the Champlain Island if possible.
Minter says the agency is currently estimating $1 million in damages to state highways, for cities and towns, damage estimates are at $4 million.
At this hour, Governor Peter Shumlin is meeting with National Guard Adjutant General Michael Dubie about Guard assistance to flooded areas.