Rising water forces River Forest nursing home evacuation

April 18, 2013 (RIVER FOREST, Ill.)

River Forest is one of several western suburbs fighting to keep the flood waters at bay.

"We started here about 2 in the morning and we've been building this sandbag, stone and concrete barrier to hopefully hold back the water," said Mark Janopoulous, River Forest Public Works Superintendent.

Torrential rains pounded the Chicago area overnight and into the morning flooding streets and just about anything else.

"I just came to see if I could make it down Roosevelt Road here to go to work but it doesn't look like it's going to happen," said Steve Uber.

High-standing water closed a portion of Roosevelt Road in Westchester as residents there woke up waterlogged basements.

"I checked on it doing the night and there was water in the pit, that's about it. And then when I woke up this morning, you see I have a basement full of water," said Westchester resident Danae Pope.

"It's ridiculous, right now I have about 4-5 feet of water in my basement, so I'm already thinking my furnace is gone," said Westchester resident Francis Dominguez.

A swollen Addison Creek spilled on Suffolk Avenue stalling out high school student Mikala Luoma as she tried to move her car.

"We're trying to warn them to stop before they mess up their car and have to put money into that as well as in their house," she said.

The Flooding also caused the Hillside Nursing Home to be evacuated. The 64 residents were moved to the home's south suburban location.

"We told them that we would run a convoy back to them to move the patients out," said Country Club Hills Fire Chief Roger Agapawa.

For most the rain tapered off in the afternoon.

But as River Forest resident Jim Zaino and his family clean up their flooded home, he's concerned about what's next.

"If it's going to be cold and snow like Tracy in the morning was saying, it's going to be bad and everything's going to freeze over," he said.

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