Major flooding in Portland caused by ice jam in Grand River


PORTLAND, Mich. (WLNS) – The clean-up process continues after dozens of people were evacuated from their homes this morning in the city of Portland, caused by an ice jam in the Grand River.

The ice on the river is completely frozen over on the surface, causing multiple businesses and homes in the area to flood.

“It’s very hard. It’s hard to see this happen,” said Pat Kline, the owner of The Blue Mason Jar Antiques and Crafts shop in Portland.

Kline says her store hasn’t seen flooding like this in thirty years.

“We have a lot of antiques and crafts, so as soon as I got here, I started getting everything up and off the floor and some things did get damaged,” said Kline.

For now, she’s just trying to get things cleaned up as quickly as possible.

“There’s nothing we can do about it, it’s what happens, nature, this is what nature does,” said Kline.

A bird’s eye view shows a huge ice jam in the Grand River, causing fifty people to evacuate their homes in the middle of the night.

Portland City Manager Tutt Gorman says this is a prime example of why it’s important to have an emergency plan in place.

“The most significant concern that we always have is the safety of our residents, and they came in very quickly and the removal and evacuation took place very quickly, and so that was our primary concern,” said Gorman.

Kline says the support she’s received from her community doesn’t surprise her at all.

“When your neighbor needs help, there’s always someone here to help, they all pitch in, it’s amazing,” said Kline.

Through this hard time she knows she’s not alone.

“Knowing that the community is behind you and your friends and family, it’s just overwhelming,” said Kline.

City officials say they’re going to keep working with people in the city until the flooding is all cleaned up and everything is back to normal. 

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