Remember When Danbury and New Milford Were Underwater?
When you live in a town that is surrounded by rivers you take the good with the bad. Case in point, Danbury and New Milford. Both have at least two major rivers that run either through or around the towns.
When the weather's nice, it can be beautiful, picturesque, and relaxing, but when the weather get's bad, and mother nature get's a little angry, well, all bets are off as to what the outcome will be.
It was late August 2011, and the area was getting ready for Hurricane Irene. The forecast was calling for the storm to cut a path right through Western Connecticut with high winds and heavy rain.
Marinas like Candlewood East and Echo Bay were tying and anchoring all boats down. The Danbury Airport was even securing all planes, and New Milford's Mayor Pat Murphy was making plans for emergency evacuation of area residents closest to the rivers.
Even Greentree Toyota in Danbury was preparing for the Still River to crest well above flood stage. Not to be caught by surprise, like they were a few years earlier by a similar storm that ruined their entire fleet of new and used cars that were parked in their lot, this time they moved all their cars to higher ground and put them in the Bob's parking lot across the street from their location.
Now, the storm's winds weren't as bad as forecasters had predicted, however Irene did dump a lot of rain. So much so, that rivers like the Still, Housatonic, and even Aspetuck caused some major local flooding.
I was able to find a few videos that capture the aftermath of Irene pretty well. You'll see some spectacular shots of Route 7 in New Milford, notice how deep the water is by the Cookhouse. The flooding also went all the way along the river up to Youngsfield.
In Danbury, the Still River turned Federal Road and Route 6 into a lake, check out all the people in Kayaks. The Berkshire Shopping Center was literally underwater, and the water came all the way up to the back doors of Stew Leonard's.
So the next time you're walking or riding along and taking in the beauty of one of the area rivers, just remember that with a little help from the weather, things can get ugly pretty fast.
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