A record rainfall in Tecumseh causes flooding in the town on September 29, 2016. (Photo courtesy OPP)

Flooding Hits Windsor-Essex (GALLERY)

Flooding is forcing emergency crews and public works staff to move into overdrive as heavy rainfall in Windsor-Essex has led to flooding of roadways, parking lots and homes.

The mayors of both Windsor and Tecumseh have declared a state of emergency for their community.

In Tecumseh, the town reported it received a record level of rainfall as of 10:30am as 140-150 mm (5.5-6 inches) of rain hit the town beginning last night. The rainfall level was updated to over 190 mm (7.5 inches) as of 3pm.

Warning Preparedness Meteorologist Geoff Coulson says the heavy rain is expected to continue on and off for the rest of today and during the day Friday.

“The heaviest hit areas in terms of rainfall amounts up until about 8am has been the Tecumseh area,” says Coulson. “We have had a couple of volunteer observation amounts of about 120 mm (4.7 inches) so far.”

Coulson says by comparison, the normal rainfall amounts for the whole month of September in Windsor-Essex is about 94 mm (3.7 inches).

For now, Windsor-Essex remains under a rainfall warning from Environment Canada.

The Town of Tecumseh is actively posting notices to residents via Twitter, letting people know that all of the pumps within its system are operating at full capacity. All available public works crews within the town are also out making sure the storm grates are clear.

Tecumseh Transit has also suspended travel until the weather clears, so the buses won’t be operating until further notice. School buses in Tecumseh have also been cancelled.

In Windsor, police are asking drivers to be extra cautious on city roads.

“It appears most of the flooding has been on Riverside Dr. between Pillette and Lauzon,” says Constable Andrew Drouillard. “We’re working with the city to set up barricades and we have had to tow some vehicles.”

Police are also warning drivers to avoid the area of McHugh St. and Darfield Rd. near the WFCU Centre because of flooding concerns. Officers say motorists should also steer clear of the area east of that intersection. Lilac Lane was also closed between Lauzon Rd. and Esplanade Dr. due to a sinkhole.

Anyone with concerns about a flooded basement is also being asked to call 311 — the service has been extended to 11pm — and not 911 unless it is an emergency.

Officials are asking anyone who doesn’t have to go out to stay home until the water clears and to check the road conditions before heading out anywhere.

— with files from Matt Weverink and Mike Vlasveld.