At least one person died as rain inundated New York’s Hudson Valley and the surrounding areas. In Vermont, rivers were expected to crest on Tuesday.
Flooding on Main Street in Londonderry, Vt., on Monday.Credit…Hilary Swift for The New York Times
Supported by
Liam StackJesse McKinley and
Jesse McKinley reported from Highland Falls, N.Y., and Kristin Chapman from Woodstock, Vt.
Torrential rainfall and widespread flooding wreaked havoc in the river valleys and mountain towns of Vermont and New York State on Monday, ravaging communities and drawing comparisons to the devastation of Tropical Storm Irene more than a decade ago.
The storm caused a night of chaos in New York on Sunday, particularly in the Hudson Valley, where up to eight inches of rain fell in some areas and one person died. But its center had shifted to Vermont by Monday, putting the landlocked and mountainous state — and particularly a number of tiny, isolated towns along rivers and creeks, just as when Irene struck — in the cross hairs for major flooding.
Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont said he feared that the sheer volume of water dumped on his state by this week’s storm system could surpass the amount that fell during Irene, which killed six people in Vermont, because the region will be pummeled by rain for several days.
“What’s different for me is that Irene lasted about 24 hours,” he said at a news conference on Monday. “We’re getting just as much rain, if not more, and it’s going on for days. That’s my concern. It’s not just the initial damage.”
Those concerns were shared across Vermont, from the state capital, Montpelier, where the Winooski River was expected to crest on Tuesday at its second-highest level ever, to the villages of southern and central Vermont, where rivers churned angrily on Monday.
“It’s just a huge magnitude of water,” Alex Beloin, who works for the wastewater department in Woodstock, Vt., said as he stood on a historic covered bridge spanning the Ottauquechee River there. “Anything that did wash out during Irene is very likely going to wash out again.”
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