Flooding deals damage

TOLONO -- Fields are turning into ponds in central Illinois, but in this situation, farmers have to leave the mess alone in order to get rid of it.

The aftermath of the weekend's rain is sending a lot of people for a spin. When it comes to heavy rain, some people say you can only do so much to prepare for it...and not much at all to clean up after it.

Farmers say some of their fields are underwater. So are the yards of people in places like Tuscola and Villa Grove. Plus, drivers have to take detours because of flooded roads.

When farmers saw dark clouds settle in, they knew trouble was brewing.

All they could do was wait and watch until the downpour slowed to a drizzle.

"I just drove around and looked at my fields to see how much they were flooded," said farmer Lin Warfel.

Warfel left his house to take a look at his corn and soybean fields. Parts of them were submerged.

"Maybe two percent of my corn's underwater. Soybean fields, maybe five percent," said Warfel.

Miniature streams sprung up and kept flowing.

People say a little rain can't hurt you...but a lot?

"When it really gets a lot, and we get ponds or underwater areas like you see behind me, it can just absolutely kill the little seedlings," said Warfel. When that happens, he said "then we have to consider replanting. That's a challenge because those areas will stay wet longer."

Then he said it's up to Mother Nature to do damage control.

But rain like this is something Warfel always expects.

Others...not so much.

"I didn't realize it was going to rain on Friday and I didn't have an umbrella, and I had to walk all the way to class," said U of I student Melissa Bayer. "There were no buses and I was running late. I had to run to class in the rain."

Bayer said she'll never forget her umbrella again.

Despite the grievances Bayer and Warfel have, it didn't rain on everyone's parade.

In fact, life was but a dream for rowers who decided to go gently down the stream.

The flooding also affected travel. Several roads in Newman and Watseka closed down because officials said they were too hazardous.


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