Downpour leaves little lasting damage in Bargersville area

Two inches of water filled Virginia Slayton’s Bargersville home Tuesday, and it wasn’t the first time.

Slayton, who lives in Stone Village near State Road 135 and Stones Crossing Road, has cleaned up the muddy mess floodwaters leave behind more than once before since the area routinely floods with heavy rains.

“I’m sick of the drainage problem,” Slayton said. “People shouldn’t have to live like this.”

On Tuesday, the west-central part of the county, near the Bargersville area, was hit hard with 7 to 8 inches of rain in a 24-hour period. According to the National Weather Service, many of the areas across the rest of the county received between 4 and 5 inches of rain.

In White River Township, firefighters were called out 19 times for storm-related issues, including fallen power lines and medical runs for those who couldn’t leave their homes. Two people were evacuated from their homes and two were pulled from their cars by boat near the El Dorado neighborhood, Chief Jeremy Pell said.

Nearby in Bargersville, a large amount of water flooded the area, but did little damage to homes and businesses, Bargersville Fire Chief Jason Ramey said.

“Our biggest concern was we had multiple highly traveled roadways that were blocked with water,” Ramey said. “I drove all day to keep log of those closed roads.”

Those roads included North County Road 725W, Division Road and Whiteland Road. Two people had to be saved from their cars after driving through high waters. By Wednesday morning, water in many areas had receded.

As the front door opens to Slayton’s house, an unpleasant scent fills the air due to the water and mud that has been standing in her house for more than 12 hours. On Tuesday afternoon, water began seeping into her house. Slayton, who is retired, spent much of Wednesday morning cleaning up as much as she could while waiting for a flood clean up company to help her.

“When it first started raining, I knew this was going to be a big one and it’s going to get in the house,” Slayton said. “I kept thinking how bad is it going to be this time? How deep is this going to get?”

Slayton feared this flood would be as big as the one that hit Johnson County and central Indiana in 2008. However, because of that flood, Slayton felt more prepared.

After the 2008 flood, she got flood insurance and took different precautions in her house, including unplugging electronics downstairs so they weren’t damaged, she said.

Bethe Michaelis lives down the street from Slayton. When she tried to come home mid-afternoon Tuesday, she could only get about five houses into the neighborhood before she had to turn around and go stay with a friend.

“We were all very worried this was going to be like ‘08 all over again,” Michaelis said. “It was crazy and ugly.”

As she came home, Michaelis noticed people pulling debris from drains to ensure water could flow. Although water didn’t get into her house, she could see a line where the water came up to her garage door, she said.

A little more than a mile away, residents of the El Dorado neighborhood near Dye’s Walk Country Club were also dealing with flooding.

“I knew it was raining hard, but I didn’t realize just how bad it was until I looked out my window and couldn’t see the bottom of my driveway,” Jason Smitten said.

“I was very worried that the water would get into my house but thank God it didn’t and thankfully by 9 p.m. last night it looked like nothing happened.”