WHEELING, Ill. (CBS) — Neighbors in Wheeling have been experiencing flooding over and over again, and they say nature isn’t only to blame.
As CBS 2’s Kristyn Hartman reports, the residents took their frustrations to the village hall Monday night.
The situation is complicated. Some residents say the village needs to do more to prevent flooding, while some Wheeling village leaders say their townhome community needs to do more, and flood victims saying, “Here we are again, losing everything, again.”
Just about all the water that rushed into Wheeling resident Marilyn Silver’s basement is gone, but the problem isn’t.
“If there were Smell-o-vision, everybody would know,” she said. “It stinks down here.”
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As the water came in, Silver says she and her family were trying to haul some items upstairs from the basement. But they couldn’t save everything.
The water reached just under the top stair leading up from the basement – about 8 feet in total.
It took out her furnaces, and soaked furniture and drywall. Now the cleanup is a daunting prospect for husband Donald Silver, who suffers from a lung disease.
“I’ve had as much as I can take,” he said.
The Silvers have been through this before. Their Wheeling townhome has been flooded three times in the past 25 years.
“Hello, Wheeling? Are you paying attention? Village, we need support,” said resident Marlene Goodman.
Some neighbors took that message to Village Hall. They say the pipes in place can’t take water out of their subdivision fast enough.
“We’re really asking for help,” a neighbor said.
The village said it would try and work with the residents.
In the meantime, the Silvers are doing their best to dry out.
“We’ve been back to normal before,” Donald Silver said. “It’s just the process from here to there is very hard.”
Wheeling Public Works officials have put the blame with the townhome community, saying it hasn’t dredged retention ponds to prevent flooding adequately.
At the meeting, residents and officials also discussed getting Cook County involved with the situation, which does not seem to have a cheap or easy fix no matter how they look at it.