Tropical Storm Ian is over, but some Palm Coast residents still worry about flooding

Barbara Brown stands on the road that runs in front of her house in the Woodlands in Palm Coast.
Barbara Brown stands on the road that runs in front of her house in the Woodlands in Palm Coast.

Ivette and Ralph Esposito on Black Alder Drive in the Woodlands in Palm Coast were wearily watching Friday afternoon as water crept closer to their house.

While many In Flagler and Volusia counties were either cleaning up the destruction left by Tropical Storm Ian or breathing a sigh of relief that they had been spared, the Espositos and others on their street still faced uncertainty.

The Espositos followed the orders of Flagler County Emergency Management, evacuating the Woodlands on Thursday and returning Friday to a dry home. They only saw a little water in the area.

"And we thought the worst is over and everything is great,” Ivette Esposito said.

But the water kept flowing into Black Alder Drive.

“It just keeps coming up. It’s a little more slower but … ,” Ivette Esposito said. “We are going to be doing a prayer vigil tonight hoping it just doesn’t come into the house."

She said they’ve been told the water was the runoff from Graham Swamp. But she said some neighbors believe it was coming from somewhere else.

“The water came from somewhere because it wasn’t from the rain last night,” she said.

“And it keeps getting closer and closer,” Ralph Esposito said.

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She said they are also concerned about the vehicles driving through the flooded road, creating a wake.

The Espositos hollered at a city truck to slow down as it traveled down the street.

“We kinda thought we beat out the storm and now we are dealing with a whole new … .” Ivette Esposito said.

“Ian is the gift that keeps on giving,” Ralph Esposito said.

She said Mayor David Alfin came out to look at the situation earlier in the day. And she said the city has provided them with filled sandbags.

A city crew was filling sandbags on Friday afternoon in the Woodlands a few blocks away.

The neighbors have taken to calling a wedge of dry asphalt that marks where the street flooding begins “the pier.”

Another neighbor, Barbara Brown, said the water has been swelling all day and pushing the pier back.

“Somehow there is water pumping into our low-lying area and it’s coming up the road at our houses, it’s coming at our property. It’s not raining, it’s coming from someplace else,” Brown said.

She said city vehicles keep coming down the flooded street.

“These vehicles of the city are coming one after the other, huge vehicles, causing the wake, which is causing our flooding more and more,” Brown said.

The water was still on the street, but Brown and the Espositos are very concerned it could reach their homes.

Chris Shamburg's house in Flagler Beach was flooded by Tropical Storm Ian.
Chris Shamburg's house in Flagler Beach was flooded by Tropical Storm Ian.

'A lake out front'

In Flagler Beach, Chris Shamburg, the general manager of the Golden Lion, was cleaning up after water flooded his house on North Fifth Street. He said he left the house about 2:30 a.m. Friday after the sewage stopped working.

"And I came back this morning and about 70% of my house has been saturated with water and sewer water, river water," Shamburg said. "All the boards are going to have to come up. My toilets still don't work. And here we are, got a lake out in the front and pretty much got a lake in the back."

Flagler's countywide curfew and evacuation orders were lifted Friday.

This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Tropical Storm Ian in Palm Coast: Residents still have flooding concerns