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Blizzard brings flooding issues to Sussex County

Photo courtesy: Mike Danz

While Kent and New Castle Counties have battled heavy snowfall, the issue in Sussex, especially near the coast, has been flooding.

In addition to between 2 and 8 inches of snow, floodwaters rose to near record levels in some places along the Delaware beaches.  It was severe enough in places like Long Neck and Oak Orchard that about 50 people were evacuated to a shelter at Sussex Central High School.

In Rehoboth Beach, Mike Danz, a kitchen manager who went to check on his restaurant near the boardwalk says he’s never seen the water rise so high.

“There was no beach. There was just water and boardwalk. [It was] crashing over, at times, on the boardwalk and roads," said Danz. "It’s one of the highest I’ve seen since Sandy.”

Flood waters also forced Route 1 between Dewey and Bethany Beaches to close due to water breaching the sand dunes from both the ocean side and the bay side. A number of other rods were closed dur to flooding.

A coastal flood warning remains in effect for Sussex County until noon Sunday.

National Weather Service meteorologist Al Cope says coastal areas should remain wary of the water levels

“We still have a couple of high tide cycles (Saturday) evening and (Sunday) morning. We may still see some serious coastal flooding with those high tides, so we’re not out of the woods yet,” said Cope.

The First State remains under a State of Emergency, and a Level 1 driving restriction remains in effect in Sussex County.  That means people should only be on the road if necessary.