A century of errors led to Edenville Dam disaster, says final report
LANSING, MI — The catastrophic failure of the Edenville Dam, which unleashed combined waters of two rivers and forced the evacuation of 10,000 people, was caused by a near century of “foreseeable and preventable” errors dating back to the initial construction. That’s the conclusion of an expert panel of dam safety officials, which pointed the blame finger at a broad system of “conflicting interests and goals” that enabled the dam beach in a final, 502-page forensic report on the 2020 mid-Michigan flooding disaster. One thing that would likely have prevented the disaster was a change in dam ownership, the report concluded. Neither Boyce nor previous owners generated enough revenue to fund spillway capacity upgrades coasting several million, according to the report. Related stories:Investigators pin Edenville failure on ‘static liquefaction’Lawmakers unveil $500M for dam safety upgrades$15M fine levied on former Edenville Dam owner‘Grave situation’ awaits Michigan without dam safety fixesDebris removed from Sanford Dam months after floodAging hazard dams force a reckoning in MichiganTimeline: The Edenville Dam saga (before, during and after)Zombie flick to film on flood-drained lakebedsmlive.com
Report Says Failure Of Two Michigan Dams In 2020 Were ‘Preventable’
The failure of two Michigan dams that forced evacuation of 10,000 people and destroyed 150 homes was “foreseeable and preventable,” resulting from errors and miscalculations over nearly a century, an expert panel said Wednesday.detroit.cbslocal.com
Report says Michigan 2020 dam failures were 'preventable'
The failure of two Michigan dams that forced evacuation of 10,000 people and destroyed 150 homes was “foreseeable and preventable,” resulting from errors and miscalculations over nearly a century, an expert panel said Wednesday. The Edenville Dam on the Tittabawassee River in central Michigan collapsed May 19, 2020, releasing a torrent that overtopped the downstream Sanford Dam and flooded the city of Midland. In a 502-page report, a forensic engineering team appointed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission described the Edenville Dam as flawed from the outset.news.yahoo.com
Republicans try to link Kalamazoo River crisis to Edenville Dam fiasco
Republicans on the House Natural Resources Committee asked multiple questions about water levels on the Kalamazoo River during a Thursday, Feb. 17 hearing on legislation introduced in response to an ongoing ecological crisis started two years ago by a surprise dam drawdown. The state says Eagle Creek drained its 1,000-acre Morrow Lake reservoir with little warning or sediment controls in November 2019. Water levels were on the mind of others, too. “So, the sediment on one side of the dam isn’t an issue but the sediment on the other side of the dam is an issue?” Rep. Gary Eisen, R-St. Clair Township, asked Rogers. Eisen circled back to water levels following testimony from Kalamazoo River Watershed Director Cheryl Vosburg.mlive.com
Sanford receives almost $1 million in FEMA funds to help remove damaged homes
MIDLAND COUNTY, MI - The village of Sanford will receive $931,930 in FEMA funds to cover the cost of purchasing and demolishing 14 homes damaged by the May 2020 Edenville Dam collapse, according to a news release from FEMA. The 14 damaged homes are located in the floodplain of the Tittabawassee River and their removal will help mitigate the community’s flood vulnerability, according to the release. FEMA will cover 75% of the $1,242,573 eligible project cost, with the remaining funds coming from Sanford, according to the release. FEMA will also cover $25,000 in management costs associated with the grant. Attorney for Edenville flooding victims says state engaging in delay tactics through appealsmlive.com
Beaverton Dam issue resolved, ending river warnings
MIDLAND, MI — Emergency management officials say crews fixed a faulty flood gate at Beaverton Dam in Gladwin, ending a week-long concern about shifting water levels and fast-moving currents downstream in Midland. Jenifier Boyer, emergency management coordinator for Midland County Emergency Management, said her Gladwin County counterparts announced the flood gate was fixed at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 21. Boyer’s office first warned the public about the river hazard Thursday, Jan. 13. Officials reported one of four Beaverton Dam flood gates was stuck open, allowing water to flow freely through the gate. The Beaverton Dam is located upstream of the Edenville Dam, on a tributary to the Tobacco River in Gladwin County.mlive.com
Gates stuck open upstream of failed Edenville dam, increased water levels and unstable ice possible
MIDLAND, MI - Authorities are urging that residents stay off the ice and water due to an issue with a dam upstream from Midland. Midland County Emergency Management was notified of an issue at the Beaverton Dam in Gladwin at 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 13. The Beaverton Dam is located upstream of the Edenville Dam and is on a tributary to the Tobacco River in Gladwin County. The public is being asked to stay off the river over the next few days, according to Midland County Emergency Management. An alert from the Midland County 911 stated that no flooding concerns are anticipated at this time.mlive.com
Northwood University gets $3.4 million from FEMA for flood repairs
MIDLAND, MI - Northwood University will receive a $3.4 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help rebuild six buildings damaged in the Edenville Dam collapse flooding from May 2020, according to a news release from U.S. Rep. John Moolenaar (R-Midland). The collapse of the Edenville Dam after heavy rainfall led to the failure of the nearby Sanford Dam and temporarily displaced roughly 10,000 residents. The flooding was declared a state and federal disaster, causing more than $209 million in damages, including ruining Northwood’s basketball court and causing its football turf to float atop the water.mlive.com
Attorney for Edenville flooding victims says state engaging in delay tactics through appeals
MIDLAND COUNTY, MI - After a recent court victory, an attorney for Edenville Dam collapse flooding victims accused the State of Michigan of using legal “delay tactics” to keep the cases out of trial. Attorney Ven Johnson’s firm represents almost 300 flooding victims in a “mass tort” suit against state agencies claiming the government failed to prevent the May 2020 Edenville Dam collapse. On Monday, Nov. 8, the Michigan Court of Appeals granted a motion to dismiss the state’s appeal of the earlier decision. “It’s going to be what I believe is at least another year, year and a half of the state’s delay tactics,” Johnson said. “These folks are obviously, understandably angry and have been devastated, and they deserve justice, in this case sadly against their own state,” Johnson said.mlive.com
Investigators pin Edenville Dam failure on ‘static liquefaction’
LANSING, MI — A sudden loss of soil strength under saturated conditions likely caused the catastrophic failure of the Edenville Dam near Midland last spring, according to an investigation report commissioned by federal regulators. The dam failed at 5:35 pm that day, releasing the Wixom Lake impoundment on the Tittabawassee and Tobbaco rivers and unleashing waters that overtopped the downstream Sanford Dam. The disaster sparked an audit of Michigan’s dam safety regulatory program that urged the state to reduce the risk of more failures with new dam licensing requirements and new financing for dam maintenance, repair and removal projects, as well as emergency responses. Republican legislation introduced this May would provide $500 million for dam safety upgrades as well as restoring the failed mid-Michigan dams. Related stories:Lawmakers unveil $500M for dam safety upgrades$15M fine levied on former Edenville Dam owner‘Grave situation’ awaits Michigan without dam safety fixesDebris removed from Sanford Dam months after floodAging hazard dams force a reckoning in MichiganTimeline: The Edenville Dam saga (before, during and after)Zombie flick to film on flood-drained lakebedsmlive.com
Flooding lawsuit can move forward after Michigan judge dismisses state motion for immunity
MIDLAND, MI - A Michigan Court of Claims judge denied a motion from the state of Michigan claiming immunity in cases filed on behalf of victims of the flooding that occurred after the collapse of the Edenville Dam in May 2020. Johnson, who represents roughly 300 flooding victims, celebrated the ruling in the release. In the release, Johnson also claimed the state has already stated it will file an appeal. “This is a significant step forward in compensating these nearly 10,000 flood victims,” Johnson said in the release. In her statement, Mukomel said the court emphasized it hasn’t reached a conclusion about what made the dam fail or who is at fault.mlive.com
Judge allows 25 lawsuits against state over May 2020 dam failure to proceed
Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens’ order allows hundreds of Midland-area residents to continue arguing in court that the state’s actions in the lead-up to the May 19, 2020 dam failure constituted an unconstitutional taking.detroitnews.com
1 year after flood, Moolenaar proposes more federal help for small towns
This would potentially save towns like Sanford millions of dollars as they attempt to return to normalcy, Moolenaar said. “The last year’s flood and dam failures were a horrible event, and parts of the region are still recovering,” Moolenaar said. “Small communities simply do not have the resources to fully rebuild after a disaster like this.”Moolenaar plans to introduce the bill in Congress later Wednesday. “It’s been inspiring to see the way that people in the Sanford community have come together to work together,” Moolenaar said. Read more on MLive:Sanford marks first anniversary of flood, ‘one of the worst things I have lived through and also the best’Then and now drone video: A year after historic Midland County floodAttorney for Edenville flood victims: State is liable for ‘billions’ in damages$15M fine levied on former Edenville Dam owner after Midland floodmlive.com
Michigan Flood Victims May Have To Wait For Accountability
A lawsuit that accuses the state of Michigan of failing to regulate and enforce safety regulations on a dam that failed, causing an estimated $200 million in damages and destroying 2,500 structures, may not be resolved soon.detroit.cbslocal.com
$15M fine levied on former Edenville Dam owner after Midland flood
The task force paid $1.5 million to acquire the Edenville, Sanford, Secord and Smallwood dams through eminent domain as a delegate of Midland and Gladwin counties. The Four Lakes Task Force says it plans to restore the Wixom Lake and Sanford Lake impoundments drained by the dam failures. The task force plans to spend about $300 million to repair the broken dams over the next six years. The disaster prompted renewed attention on dam safety in Michigan. A state dam safety task force in February warned of another “grave situation” in a report to the governor and legislature if the state’s safety regulations aren’t updated.mlive.com
Public warned to stay off ice behind Edenville Dam due to planned water level drop
MIDLAND, MI - Officials are warning the public to stay off of the ice near the Edenville Dam as unstable ice conditions are expected to form. Water levels are expected to drop about 12 feet behind the dam, and less upstream, by the second week of March. The Edenville Dam failed in May, 2020 after significant rainfall stressed the structure, leading to it’s ultimate failure. Dangerous and unstable ice conditions are expected to develop as water levels drop. The area of unsafe ice conditions is concentrated between Dale Road and the remaining portion of the dam west of M-30.mlive.com
Crews to lower spillway connected to failed Michigan dam
In this Wednesday, May 20, 2020, photo, people survey the flood damage to the Curtis Road Bridge in Edenville, Mich., over the Tittabawassee River. (Neil Blake/The Grand Rapids Press via AP)EDENVILLE, Mich. – Crews will begin lowering a spillway connected to a dam that failed last year and contributed to massive flooding in parts of mid-Michigan. The Edenville Dam Tobacco River spillway will be lowered by more than 20 feet (6 meters) starting Feb. 24 to help prevent future flooding, according to Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. More than 11,000 people in the Midland area had to be evacuated last May after heavy rains stressed the Edenville Dam, about 140 miles (225 kilometers) north of Detroit, and the Sanford Dam, about 7 miles (11 kilometers) downriver. The nearly century-old Edenville Dam had been the target of lengthy investigations by federal regulators.
Crews To Lower Spillway Connected To Failed Michigan Dam
EDENVILLE, Mich. (AP) — Crews will begin lowering a spillway connected to a dam that failed last year and contributed to massive flooding in parts of mid-Michigan. The Edenville Dam Tobacco River spillway will be lowered by more than 20 feet starting Feb. 24 to help prevent future flooding, according to Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. Water levels are expected to drop about 12 feet behind the dam — and less upstream — by the second week in March, the agency said Wednesday. More than 11,000 people in the Midland area had to be evacuated last May after heavy rains stressed the Edenville Dam, about 140 miles north of Detroit, and the Sanford Dam, about 7 miles downriver. The nearly century-old Edenville Dam had been the target of lengthy investigations by federal regulators.detroit.cbslocal.com
Michigan task force set to make dam safety recommendations
The Michigan Dam Safety Task Force has been working on recommendations that would require Legislature approval to reduce the threat of dam failures after two dams failed in Midland County last May, forcing the evacuation of 10,000 people. The task force is asking for an annual $20 million revolving fund for the next 20 years to maintain and remove dams. To address hazard cleanup for when a dam owner fails to act, the task force is asking for a dam safety emergency fund. AdTask force chairman Evan Pratt said he values the sense of urgency the language provides, referring to dam safety issues in Michigan as a “ticking time bomb.” He said recommendations won't stop dams from failing, but the task force must reduce the frequency and severity of failures. “You know, how many 300-year rains has Midland seen in the last five or six years?"
Investigators seek more firsthand accounts of May 2020 Edenville Dam collapse
MIDLAND, MI - A federally created team investigating the failure of the Edenville and Sanford dams is asking Michigan residents to provide firsthand accounts of the Edenville Dam’s condition on the day of the collapse. The team asks anyone with firsthand observations, photos or videos of the embankment to reach out to it through email at email@example.com. Heavy spring rain led to the failure of the Edenville Dam near the Gladwin-Midland county line and subsequently led to the failure of Sanford Dam downstream in Midland County. The dam collapse caused flooding that initially displaced 10,000 people, damaged thousands of homes and caused more than $200 million in property damage. Read more:Through pandemic, floods and protests, these Michiganders helped all of us weather 2020Michigan town devastated by 500-year flood pulls together to rebuild communityEdenville and Sanford Dam investigators put out call for informationmlive.com
100 photos that captured the difficulty, hope in the Saginaw and Bay City areas for 2020
SAGINAW AND BAY CITY, MI - It was an eventful year in and surrounding the Saginaw and Bay City areas during 2020. All City of Bay City parks have blocked off their playground equipment temporarily. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comREAD MORE: Gov. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comGuests practice social distancing during a football game between Bay City Central and Mount Pleasant at Bay City Central on Friday, Sept. 25, 2020. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comREAD MORE: Covenant HealthCare staff roll up sleeves for first round of COVID-19 vaccine in Saginawmlive.com
Dry lakebeds pose risks to adventurers in Michigan’s Midland area
Or rather, what was Sanford and Wixom Lake. In May, the failure of the Edenville and Sanford dams led to the drainage of Sanford and Wixom Lake. While a smaller river continues to run through the lakebeds, new, hazardous features have been uncovered. “Winter changes everything, if it’s snowing and you can’t see very far,” Gladwin County Emergency Director Robert North told the Midland Daily News. These two construction projects make the Tobacco River arm of Wixom Lake unusually dangerous this winter.
Flood and mud destroyed their home, but now a Michigan family has reason to celebrate
(Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comShe had no idea her life was about to turn upside down. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comRecovering from the disaster has taken months of hard work and some good fortune. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comTheir house did not sit even one day after the initial flooding before the cleanup began. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comThe companies working on the home set Thanksgiving for the family to move back into the home. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com“I want to figure out a way to give back, I’m just not there yet.mlive.com
Emergency construction starting on Michigan dam that failed
EDENVILLE, Mich. – Crews have started emergency construction work on a portion of a central Michigan dam that collapsed last spring and contributed to flooding that destroyed homes and forced the evacuations of about 10,000 people. Excavation work will be done below the Edenville Dam in Midland County, according to state officials. The dam failed during a steady rain in May, draining Wixom Lake and unleashing the Tittabawassee River, which then overwhelmed the Sanford dam, about 140 miles (225 kilometers) north of Detroit. Work also is being done inside the Tobacco River spillway in Gladwin and Midland counties to prepare it for being lowered by 21 feet (6.4 meters), officials said. The Edenville Dam is classified as a high hazard dam.
State begins construction on Michigan dam after owner fails to take up safety measures
The state has begun its emergency work to partially breach the Edenville Dam’s Tobacco River spillway following the catastrophic dam failure in May. The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) had issued an emergency work order to dam owner Boyce Hydro to complete the construction itself, but the company has failed to do so. The Edenville Dam is classified as a High Hazard Dam, meaning that a collapse could result in severe flooding and loss of life. The Michigan Dam Safety Task Force was created after the Edenville Dam failure and will provide recommendations to the state on how to limit risks going forward. More From MLive:State issues emergency work order to Boyce Hydro for Edenville DamTask force to buy Edenville, other Boyce Hydro dams for $1.5MTimeline: The Edenville Dam saga, before, during and after the breakmlive.com
Group seeks holiday donations for Saginaw County families affected by spring flooding
SAGINAW, MI - Saginaw County’s flood recovery coalition is asking for donations to support families affected by flooding following the Edenville Dam collapse earlier this year. The Saginaw County Long-Term Disaster Recovery Group, a coalition of government and nonprofit organizations coordinating disaster response for the county, is soliciting donations of large items, funds, gift cards or Christmas decorations in order to spread cheer and help give impacted families a happy holiday season. Those interested can also “adopt” one or more families to help with specific needs, or volunteer to help deliver food or presents. “While FEMA money is extremely helpful it generally does not cover the complete cost of structural repair nor any contents,” said Saginaw County Emergency Manager Mark Przybylski in the release. “We have many families who lost their holiday decorations in the flood.mlive.com
See progress in Midland County 6 months after historic flood
Below are before and after images six months apart after the Edenville and Sanford dam failures caused major flooding in Midland and Sanford. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comWater floods the Midland Area Farmers Market and the tridge along the Tittabawassee River in Midland on Tuesday, May 19, 2020. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comPeople check out the flooding near the H Hotel in downtown Midland on Wednesday, May 20, 2020. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comWater floods the Midland Area Farmers Market along the Tittabawassee River in Midland on Tuesday, May 19, 2020. (Kaytie Boomer | MLive.com)Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comA bike share system is under water near the Midland Area Farmers Market along the Tittabawassee River in Midland on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.mlive.com
Debris removed from Sanford Dam months after flooding disaster
SANFORD, MI — A six-month-old pile of flooding debris in Midland County is finally being cleaned up after the failure of two mid-Michigan dams this spring. Fisher Contracting crews began removing trashed boats, sunken canoes, lawn furniture, propane tanks, broken docks and many tree pieces from the Sanford Dam this week. “This is all material that came down from both lakes and piled up behind this dam structure,” said Bill Gebo, Four Lakes Task Force project coordinator. Substantial debris accumulated at the Sanford Dam, which itself was overtopped by floodwaters from the Wixom and Sanford Lake impoundments that were unleashed when the earthen dyke in Edenville collapsed. People with items in the debris pile have been prohibited from retrieving them out of concern doing so could shift the pile and cause further damage to the dam.mlive.com
Lawsuit alleges immigrant emergency workers contracted coronavirus in Midland flooding cleanups
MIDLAND, MI – This summer’s area flooding from two Midland County dam failures has resulted in another lawsuit, this one addressing immigrant recovery workers who were infected with COVID-19. The suit was filed in Midland County Circuit Court with a minimum of $25,000 being sought. It is critical that we recognize the essential role of resilience workers and implement measures to protect them in their workplaces,” Soni said. In Michigan, these workers were met with crowded employer-provided housing, shared employer-provided transportation and no ability to socially distance, the suit alleges. Since the dams' failure, dozens of lawsuits have been filed in state and federal courts, with the dams' owners and state agencies named as defendants.mlive.com
Review concludes Michigan’s Dam Safety Unit is understaffed, constrained by time and budget
LANSING, Mich. – The Association of State Dam Safety Officials' (ASDSO) review of Michigan’s Dam Safety Unit was presented at a meeting of the Michigan Dam Safety Task Force. READ: Michigan department publishes dam failure reportIt concluded that Michigan’s program is understaffed and constrained by limited time, resources and budget. Officials said Michigan’s investments in dam safety have been lacking for decades, which increases the risk to public safety and the environment. Currently, Michigan’s program has two dam safety engineers and one supervisor with a third dam safety engineer to be hired soon. In the Fiscal Year 2021 there is funding for hiring two more dam safety engineers.
Restoring Edenville, Sanford dams and lakes after flood could cost some property owners $90,000 or more
The Four Lakes Task Force, the nonprofit “delegated authority” for the dams' maintenance and operations, released a report on Sept. 10 to update the public on the dams and nearby lakes. The Edenville Dam failed May 19 after heavy rainfall, devastating the neighboring areas and draining Wixom and Sanford lakes and damaging Sanford Lake dam. The Edenville Dam would require most of the funds at about $208 million, and the Sanford Dam needs another $92 million chunk. The order is to partially breach the Edenville Dam’s Tobacco River spillway to improve the stability of the Tobacco River portion of the Edenville Dam. Ahead of the dam safety operations review, the state announced that it was hiring a third dam safety engineer.mlive.com
State issues emergency work order to Boyce Hydro for Edenville Dam
Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has issued an emergency work order to Edenville Dam owner Boyce Hydro. Boyce Hydro, LLC and Boyce Hydro Power, LLC, both owned by Lee Mueller, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early August. The emergency work order requires Boyce Hydro to immediately hire a contractor to do the work and send EGLE proof of a contract by Sept. 21. There will also be a review of the state’s dam safety operations, performed by the Association of State Dam Safety Officials and the new Michigan Dam Safety Task Force will provide recommendations to the state on how to limit risks going forward. Ahead of the dam safety operations review, the state announced that it was hiring a third dam safety engineer.mlive.com
Michigan department publishes dam failure report
The report provides an update on the ongoing investigation into the Edenville Dam, plans to restore the Tobacco River's flow and the lack of coordination with the dams' owner Boyce Hydro. But while awaiting the conclusion of the investigation, EGLE provided the first of a series of reports requested by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer that will provide information about how the dam failures came to be and reviewing dam safety policies in Michigan. The report doesn’t address any parties at fault for the dam failures, but addresses what EGLE will do next to address the safety concerns left by the Edenville dam. Read more: Frustrated Michigan officials issue emergency order to Edenville Dam owners ignoring deadlines
Frustrated Michigan officials issue emergency order to Edenville Dam owners ignoring deadlines
Theyre frustrated that the owners of the Edenville Dam are ignoring deadlines, so they issued them an emergency order. The Edenville Dam failed May 19, leaving 11,000 people evacuated and 2,500 structures damaged by the 500-year flood. With Tuesdays emergency order, Boyce Hydro is forced to alter the Edenville Dam to ensure public safety and have that project done by the end of the year. State officials believe that is the best option to address dam safety concerns right now. They will take a look at Michigans Dam Safety Program and an independent investigation is looking at the factors that led to the dam failure.
Local 4 News at 5 -- Sept. 1, 2020
Heres whats coming up on Local 4 News at 5:Frustrated Michigan officials issue emergency order to Edenville Dam owners ignoring deadlinesMichigan officials said its an unusual step, but it has to be done. Theyre frustrated that the owners of the Edenville Dam are ignoring deadlines, so they issued them an emergency order. The Edenville Dam failed May 19, leaving 11,000 people evacuated and 2,500 structures damaged by the 500-year flood.
Plants cropping up in lost Michigan lakes where dams failed
Nature is returning to the dry beds of a string of mid-Michigan lakes that drained in May after two dams failed during torrential rains. (AP Photo/ Jeff McMillan)LANSING, Mich. Nature is returning to craters left from lakes drained by two dams that failed in May during torrential rain in mid-Michigan. It hopes to restore the infrastructure and shoreline of Wixom and Sanford lakes and prevent homes from being lost to the eroding edges of what were once the lakes. Under eminent domain, the owners, Boyce Hydro and and Boyce Hydro Power, could be ordered to sell the properties to the task force as the governmental body representing the counties, task force spokesperson Stacey Trapani said. Four Lakes Task Force estimates it will cost more than $30 million to stop the erosion, remove the debris left by the flooding and stabilize all four dams.
Horses displaced by Midland floods find home at west Michigan rescue farm
WEST BRANCH, Mich. Several horses displaced by the pandemic and flooding across parts of central Michigan have found a new home at a rescue farm. WATCH: Aerial footage of Midland flood devastation on May 21Since then, D&R Acres Hobby and Rescue Farm has received several equines. The 20 acre farm and 13,000-square-foot barn and riding facility is now home to 38 horses, donkeys, mules, ponies and miniature horses. Were kind of the retirement home for horses, said Dolores 'Doris' Harris, chief financial officer and founder of D&R Acres, of West Branch. Although many animals stay at D&R Acres for the rest of their days, the farm does adopt out equines once the animal adjusts to the situation.
New York Times features Michigan Gov. Whitmer, her response to 2020 crises
In the article Whitmer says that she knew she was on her own to fend for Michigan after a call with Trump in mid-March. Whitmer had asked the federal government to supply Michigan with needed N95 masks from the national stockpile, and Trump reportedly declined and insisted states acquire their own supplies. Whitmer has since stood by her executive orders and is currently reopening the states economy in phases. A study by Imperial College London and Oxford University found that Whitmers rapid and aggressive response to the COVID-19 pandemic could have saved tens of thousands of lives. The author does say that based on the many conversations theyve had over the last few months, Gov.
Mothers ashes recovered after being swept away during Midland floods
When the village of Sanford was hit by massive flooding in May, Kathy Parsch set out to find her mothers ashes. ORIGINAL STORY: Sanford woman kayaks to floating home swept away by flood to recover mothers ashesSurrounded by unthinkable destruction, there wasnt a dry eye as Parschs ashes were pulled from mud. She was joined by friends on kayaks to paddle through the wreckage to find Parschs home in a river. After visiting the house seven times, Parsch couldnt find her mothers ashes. Her mothers ashes were found the day before Sanford officials would start scooping up debris to haul away.
Dozens of residents join lawsuit against dam owners following devastating mid-Michigan floods
MIDLAND, Mich. As many as 60 residents have joined a class-action lawsuit against the owners of the dams that failed and caused catastrophic flooding in mid-Michigan. READ: Investigating who is responsible for Edenville Dam failure that led to devastating floodsTheres a lot of finger pointing as residents join a class-action lawsuit against the dam owners and the state. We moved up here because we wanted to be by the lake (where) we grew up as kids, Tom said. Lantzys law firm is representing more than 60 families in the class-action lawsuit against dam owner Boyce Hydro. The lawsuit looks to hold Boyce Hydro negligent and liable for damages, including medical expenses, property damage and property value.
We thought we would retire in next few years -- Northville familys cottage destroyed in floods
NORTHVILLE, Mich. A Northville family whose cottage was destroyed when dam failures caused catastrophic flooding in mid-Michigan said they thought they would retire in the next few years, but thats no longer the case. Julie Ann Van Ameyde said her family is still reeling from the floods and feels forgotten by the government. This was going to be our retirement home, Van Ameyde said. Van Ameyde lives in Northville, but she and her husband had a retirement home in Beaverton. An act of God, Van Ameyde said.
6 dams in SE Michigan considered ‘high hazard potential dams’ -- here’s the list
It turns out six dams in the area are considered “high hazard potential." A high hazard dam might cause serious damage to homes, buildings, highways and lives, according to experts. The Pontiac Lake Dam is also considered a high hazard potential -- upsetting news to those who live and fish on the lake. According to EGLE, there are 85 high hazard potential dams in the state. The Defenders asked for copies of the inspection reports and lists of violations for the six high hazard potential dams in Southeast Michigan, but we are still waiting for that paperwork.
LIVE STREAM: Michigan officials provide update on flooding aftermath in Midland County
MIDLAND COUNTY, Mich. – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel will host a news briefing at 3 p.m. on Tuesday to provide an update on the aftermath of the Edenville and Sanford dam failures and subsequent flooding in Mid-Michigan last month. You can watch the briefing live in the video player above at 3 p.m.Nessel will be joined by the director of the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) Liesl Clark and the director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Dan Eichinger. The briefing comes almost three weeks after nearly 11,000 mid-Michigan residents evacuated their homes due to a massive flooding emergency caused by breaches in the Edenville and Sanford dams. The flood damaged countless homes, businesses and roads in central Michigan. Whitmer requests investigation of dam breach that caused massive flooding in mid-Michigan
Congress demands answers into Michigan dam failures
DETROIT A U.S. House of Representatives Committee is now investigating the State and Federal Governments oversight of the dam failure in Midland County. Michigan Reps. Debbie Dingle and Fred Upton, along with the House Energy and Commerce Committee is demanding answers within two weeks to specific questions about how the Edenville Dam was inspected and allowed to operate. How did EGLE label the dam in fair structural condition when it took authority back in October 2018? A copy of Dingell and Uptons letter to FERC is available here. A copy of Dingell and Uptons letter to EGLE is available here.
More mid-Michigan residents sue Edenville, Sanford dam owners after flooding devastation
DETROIT – Buckfire Law Firm announced Tuesday two class-action lawsuits filed against Edenville and Sanford dam owners and the state of Michigan following the devastating flood emergency in central Michigan last month. Nearly 11,000 mid-Michigan residents evacuated their homes on May 20 after multiple dams were breached, causing a massive flooding emergency in the region. Tuesday’s lawsuits are part of a series of filings against the dam owners and state for allegedly neglecting to ensure the dams operated in accordance with federal guidelines. The dam owners have previously received multiple citations from federal regulators for failure to meet safety guidelines over the last decade. MORE: Residents want answers in Edenville Dam failure that led to devastating floodsBuckfire Law is representing 19 mid-Michigan residents in the federal class-action lawsuit against dam owners Boyce Hydro and its manager Lee Mueller.
Communities chip in for family expecting child who lost everything in Midland flood
Communities chip in for family expecting child who lost everything in Midland floodPublished: May 27, 2020, 6:18 pmWhen flood waters came through Midland County last week, it pushed Sam and Richie O’Keefe’s home against the post office.
Debris line neighborhoods in mid-Michigan as community deals with damage from devastating floods
MIDLAND COUNTY, Mich. – On Wednesday, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was back in Midland County to announce an investigation into why the Edenville and Sanford dams gave way. A week later, piles of debris lined neighborhoods. READ: Shocking mid-Michigan flood pictures show ravaged roads, underwater houses, floating carsNeither of them know if their homes are stable enough to move back into. MORE: More than 800 volunteers visit Midland to help flood victims despite pandemicWatch the video above to hear from Coulson and Mills.
Debris line neighborhoods in mid-Michigan as community deals with damage from devastating floods
Debris line neighborhoods in mid-Michigan as community deals with damage from devastating floodsPublished: May 27, 2020, 5:17 pmOn Wednesday, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was back in Midland County to announce an investigation into why the Edenville and Sanford dams gave way.
Gov. Whitmer requests investigation of dam breach that caused massive flooding in mid-Michigan
Gretchen Whitmer held a news conference on Wednesday to provide an update on the state’s response to the historic flooding event in Midland County. “This flooding forced thousands to evacuate their homes, destroyed public infrastructure, ruined homes and businesses, and caused major natural resource damage,” said Governor Whitmer. The Kriegers and Sperlings own adjacent properties and homes on the banks of the Tittabawassee River less than a mile south of the Edenville Dam. Whitmer extended the state of emergency for Midland County to include three additional counties last weekend. U.S. President Donald Trump approved a federal emergency declaration for Midland County last Thursday.
Communities chip in for family expecting child who lost everything in Midland flood
When flood waters came through Midland County last week, it pushed Sam and Richie OKeefes home against the post office. The couple is expecting to give birth to their daughter Sydney Thursday. Everything the family had prepared for baby Sydney was washed away when the dam broke. RELATED: Midland County residents sue state of Michigan over Edenville Dam failureThe couple shared their story on social media and people rushed to help -- one person drove three hours to drop off some baby items. The couple said its overwhelming how helpful others have been for Sydney.
Midland County residents sue state of Michigan over Edenville Dam failure
A 28-page complaint was filed in the Michigan Court of Claims by Edenville, Mich. residents David and Andrew Krieger and James and Margaret Sperling. The Kriegers and Sperlings own adjacent properties and homes on the banks of the Tittabawassee River less than a mile south of the Edenville Dam. According to the complaint, the 96-year-old earthen embankment failed after several days of heavy rain on May 19, 2020. The complaint states that the failure of the Edenville Dam and subsequent flooding of a large area in Midland County was caused, in part, by a failure of EGLE to order the necessary repairs to the dam. For decades, federal regulators had demanded changes to the design of the Edenville Dam to improve its ability to withstand flooding, and federal regulators had warned since at least 1993 that the dam failed to meet safety requirements, reads the complaint.
Four Lakes Task Force halts purchase of mid-Michigan dams following floods
EDENVILLE, Mich. A task force that was set to acquire and improve mid-Michigan dams has halted the purchase after dam failures caused historic flooding last week. About 10,000 people in mid-Michigan were asked to evacuate their homes after multiple dams were breached, causing a major flooding emergency. Here is the full statement from the Four Lakes Task Force:"Recent events related to the Edenville dam failure were terrible and tragic for our community. All of us on the Four Lakes Task Force are devastated by our individual and collective losses, and our hearts go out to everyone who is impacted. The Four Lakes Task Force is collaborating with the Counties, lake communities and regulatory authorities on the best path forward as we assess the issues and work toward recovery.
Sanford woman kayaks to floating home swept away by flood to recover mother’s ashes
Sanford woman kayaks to floating home swept away by flood to recover mother’s ashesPublished: May 23, 2020, 11:13 pmParsch and her friends are looking for her home in Sanford after it was swept away by the floods. When they first returned to the home’s location, they discovered only the foundation remained.
Sanford woman kayaks to floating home swept away by flood to recover mothers ashes
SANFORD, Mich. When the massive flooding overtook mid-Michigan earlier this week, Kathy Parsch was the last person to evacuate the village of Sanford. Nearly 11,000 mid-Michigan residents were forced to evacuate their homes due to a massive flooding emergency triggered by dam failures on Tuesday. READ: Catastrophic flooding, evacuations in mid-Michigan as dams fail: What to knowNow Parsch and her friends are looking for her home in Sanford after it was swept away by the floods. Parsch and her friends found kayaks laying around and got into the water. The Sanford woman was on a mission to recover her mothers ashes that were left inside the home when she evacuated.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer adds 3 counties to flood-related state of emergency
Gretchen Whitmer has added three counties to her state of emergency issued as a result of two dam failures that caused devastating floods in the middle of the state. Arenac, Gladwin and Saginaw counties have been added to the state of emergency that was issued for Midland County. “I have declared an emergency to provide much needed assistance and have added Arenac, Gladwin and Saginaw counties to the declaration to ensure access to critical resources. (WDIV)Officials evacuated 750 Saginaw County residents, 500 Arenac County residents and more than 100 Gladwin County residents due to rising waters. By adding them to the state of emergency, Whitmer allows these three counties to receive law enforcement and shelter support, road repair help, search and rescue services and more.
Michigan Republican Party asks attorney general to give feds control of investigation into Midland tragedy
DETROIT – In recent days the Detroit News and Bridge Magazine have published stories about Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s lawsuit against the owner of the Edenville Dam, which tragically failed on Tuesday forcing thousands to evacuate their homes because of the floods. Nessel wanted more water added to promote the safety of freshwater mussels, which she alleged were being damaged by the low water levels. Michigan Republican Party Chairman Laura Cox is calling on Nessel to recuse her office from the investigation of the Edenville Dam tragedy and transfer the inquiry to federal authorities. "With these troubling new revelations that the state’s lawsuits may have played a role in this tragedy, it is clear that Attorney General Dana Nessel should not lead this investigation. Therefore, the Michigan Republican Party calls for the Attorney General to turn over the investigation of the Edenville Dam’s failure to federal authorities.
Red Cross shelters open to help residents impacted by devastating mid-Michigan floods
MIDLAND COUNTY, Mich. – Historic flooding caused by dam failures forced thousands from their homes in mid-Michigan. The Edenville dam and Sanford dams failed. At about 5 p.m. Tuesday, the Edenville Dam that created Wixom Lake gave away. MORE: Residents in Midland County return after evacuationsThe American Red Cross is still helping residents impacted by the floods. READ: Residents want answers in Edenville Dam failure that led to devastating floodsView the list of shelters below:
NASA images show difference in rivers, dams after flooding in mid-Michigan
DETROIT NASA released images that show just how devastating the historic flood was in mid-Michigan this week. The natural-color images show flooding across Midland County as observed by the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8. The slider below shows the Tittabawassee River on May 20, 2020 (right), compared to June 3, 2019 (left). The after photos show the level of water that emptied from dams and rivers into neighborhoods and surrounding areas. Major flooding in Mid-Michigan: How much rain fell, how historic was it?
ClickOnDetroit NIGHTSIDE report -- Thursday, May 21, 2020
Gretchen Whitmers plan to mitigate the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) requires people to be very conscious of how they spend their time. Michiganders are asked to stay home as much as possible -- but a new order issued on Thursday gives people more latitude. The situation has turned into a bitterly contested finger pointing match on who is to blame for the Edenville Dam failure. Gretchen Whitmer continues to loosen her coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions across the state, as many businesses and procedures are now able to open in some capacity. Before she extended her first stay-at-home order on April 24, Whitmer had virtually shut down the entire state completely.
Damage of floods revealed in Midland County as water recedes
SANFORD, Mich. Residents were allowed back into their neighborhoods as the floodwaters in Midland County receded. Houses, garages, vehicles and more were swept away in the devastating Tuesday floods. READ: Catastrophic flooding, evacuations in mid-Michigan as dams fail: What to knowTravis Barringer and Crystal Kerns had the only home in their neighborhood still standing, but it was filled with water and destroyed. The Edenville Dam failed Tuesday night and sent Wixom Lake into a neighborhood just down river. Kerns said they are staying with family and are hoping to find a place to call their own for their family and pets.
Sanford residents band together to clean up destroyed main street
SANFORD, Mich. Every business along the main street in Sanford has been damaged by the flood. A new energy can be found Friday on Saginaw Road as residents help clean and fix their community. READ: Catastrophic flooding, evacuations in mid-Michigan as dams fail: What to knowAll I could think of was that it looked like a war zone, said Pam Riggie, with Sanford Pizza. Not only is Sanford Pizza destroyed, photos inside of Riggies late father were also washed away. The customers who came for pick-up to help the business stay afloat during the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders returned Friday to help clean up.
Homeowners survey devastation of Midland County floods
Homeowners survey devastation of Midland County floodsPublished: May 21, 2020, 12:24 pmAuthorities were assessing damage Thursday as floodwaters from heavy rains that overtook two dams retreated in some mid-Michigan communities and continued to threaten others further downriver.
Mid-Michigan Flooding The Environmental Impacts Are Unknown
This is beginning to raise concerns about environmental impacts from the debris and the force of water that washed away homes, but also because of existing environmental cleanup efforts that have been on-going. Dow Chemical has been in business since 1897 and is now a multi-billion dollar company with facilities in 30 countries. Dioxins and furans are byproducts from chlorine-based products produced there over its history and have was released into the Tittabawassee River. Mid-Michigan hasnt seen a flood of this magnitude since 1986 when floodwaters caused Dows waste-water system to empty into the Tittabawassee River. With these massive floods happening recently across Mid-Michigan again, its unclear how these floodwaters will affect the Saginaw River basin.detroit.cbslocal.com
Your whole life is in a house and its gone -- Residents in Midland County return after evacuations
SANFORD, Mich. Many people who lived in Sanford returned home to find nothing left after Tuesdays dam failures and floods. Roads were blocked off so this is the first time we could get here," said Pat Perry. Its something you cant even fathom," Pat Perry said. Just Devastating -- Wixom Lake becomes muddy field after dam failuresYou can see where my house was," Jerry Perry said. Things are just things, but it is a hard pill to swallow," Pat Perry said.
WATCH: Aerial footage of Midland flood devastation on May 21
MIDLAND, Mich. New Local 4 footage shows the city of Midland largely underwater on Thursday following this weeks major flooding emergency in mid-Michigan. Watch the video below:The Edenville Dam broke on Tuesday evening and the Sanford Dam has been breached after heavy rainfall hit the region, causing massive flooding in the area. READ: Catastrophic flooding, evacuations in mid-Michigan as dams fail: What to knowNearly 10,000 residents in Edenville, Sanford and parts of Midland have been evacuated amid the major flooding emergency. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Midland County on Tuesday night. The governor has since requested federal aid to assist with the states response to the flooding emergency.
Drone footage shows extend of damage caused by severe floods in mid-Michigan
Gretchen Whitmer has asked for a federal emergency declaration due to devastating floods in mid-Michigan. The Edenville Dam broke on Tuesday evening and the Sanford Dam breached after heavy rainfall hit the region, causing massive flooding in the area. By Wednesday morning, water that was several feet high covered some streets near the river in downtown Midland. READ: Investigating who is responsible for Edenville Dam failure that led to devastating floodsThe flooding forced about 11,000 people to evacuate their homes in the Midland area. Midland City Manager Brad Kaye said it was fortunate that the Tittabawassee River crested at just over 35 feet (11 meters), about 3 feet (90 centimeters) below the forecast level.
Tittibiwassee River crests at 35 feet, could still be days before waters recede
MIDLAND COUNTY, Mich. A State of Emergency was declared for Midland County after two dams failed. The Edenville Dam broke and the Sanford Dam was breached late Tuesday night. It was almost a surreal piece of good news for the Midland County Emergency Management team to announce the Tittibiwassee River had crested at 35 feet on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.Its still 11 feet above flood stage and the area is still days away from the waters receding. On the Tobacco River, near the Edenville Dam people tried to salvage what they could. Unlike the Edenville Dam, where the water physically broke through -- sending parts of the dam downriver.
Local 4 News at 11 -- May 20, 2020
Published: May 20, 2020, 10:54 pm Updated: May 20, 2020, 11:42 pmHeres whats coming up on Local 4 News at 11:A live look at conditions after flooding devastates mid-MichiganA State of Emergency was declared for Midland County after two dams failed. The Edenville Dam broke and the Sanford Dam was breached late Tuesday night. An estimated 10,000 people are evacuating as floods have devastated towns.
What we know about flooding in Michigan that breached two dams, forced 10,000 evacuations
About 10,000 people were told to evacuate from parts of Michigan after floodwaters caused two dams to fail following heavy rain across the state. The dam collapses have led to impassable roads, a boil water advisory and raised regulatory questions about Edenville Dam's hydro-power generating license. Which Michigan dams are failing and where are they? The Edenville Dam on the Tittabawassee River, which is owned by Boyce Hydro, breached Tuesday evening. More Michigan dams crumblingThe failing Midland County dams are just the most high-profile examples of a chronic problem in Michigan: dams that are as aging and crumbling as Michigan's roads and bridges.monroenews.com
Multiple Dams Break Forcing Thousands To Evacuate In Midland County
(Photo Credit: Blair Patty)For the second time in less than 24 hours, families living along the Tittabawassee River and connected lakes in Midland County were ordered Tuesday evening to leave home. Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Midland County and urged residents threatened by the flooding to find a place to stay with friends or relatives or to seek out one of several shelters that opened across the county. The evacuations include the towns of Edenville, Sanford, and parts of Midland, according to Selina Tisdale, spokeswoman for Midland County. Sanford Lake, MI (Photo Credit: Blair Patty)The Edenville Dam, which was built in 1924, was rated in unsatisfactory condition in 2018 by the state. (Photo Credit: George Klumb)The Tittabawassee River was at 30.5 feet and rising Tuesday night flood stage is 24 feet.detroit.cbslocal.com
State of emergency in central Michigan after two dams fail, forcing 10,000 to evacuate
TC Votre via Reuters"This is unlike anything we've seen in Midland County," she said. Emergency responders went door-to-door early Tuesday morning warning residents living near the Edenville Dam of the rising water. The evacuations include the towns of Edenville, Sanford and parts of Midland, according to Selina Tisdale, spokeswoman for Midland County. The Edenville Dam, which was built in 1924, was rated in unsatisfactory condition in 2018 by the state. The Tittabawassee River was at 30.5 feet and rising Tuesday night - flood stage is 24 feet.cbsnews.com