A low-pressure system stalled over the eastern half of Williams County Monday and dumped more than three inches of rain in less than 24 hours on West Unity and Stryker, flooding parts of both villages.
National Weather Service Meteorologist Nathan Marsili recorded 3.25 inches of rain along the Williams-Fulton county line by Monday evening.
“Weekend showers already saturated the ground,” Marsili said. “It was all runoff after that.”
Williams County Engineer Todd Roth described it more like a flash flood.
“We had rain Sunday, then all day Monday. The heaviest part was Monday evening,” Roth said. “It came out of the fields in different areas and it was really fast-moving, almost like a flash flood. It was pretty bad; I’ve never seen it like that before.”
He closed County Road O east of U.S.127 at 9:43 p.m. after high water contributed to a non-injury accident near Alvordton, and then County Road 11 north of U.S. 20.
“Mill Creek (north of West Unity) is usually one of our last areas to flood because it collects from other areas,” Roth said. “It was really bad Monday night.”
High water contributed to another accident at 9:57 p.m. on Ohio 34, east of Ohio 191 near Stryker.
Stryker Police Chief Steve Schlosser and West Unity Police Chief JR Jones both stated Monday’s flood was, “The worst I’ve seen in my lifetime.”
“We got hit hard,” Schlosser said. “From the Dollar General to the library, it was probably a foot deep in the street. It went into a lot of homes along Defiance Street; I’m sure a lot of basements are flooded. West Curtis Street was pretty bad from Center Street to a little west of West Street. That got deep.
“Nobody got hurt and nobody had to be evacuated, so that’s a blessing,” Schlosser added.
Jones in West Unity just had to look out his office window. “A lot of debris washed up against the railroad ties outside town hall,” he said.
“The weigh station gym (downtown at the Y-intersection of U.S. 127 and 20A) flooded on both sides,” Jones said. “Ohio 191 coming into town flooded. East Church Street by Kamco is still shut down.
“It was pretty hectic for about three hours, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.,” Jones said. “A lot of homes and basements flooded. I haven’t seen it flood like this ever.”
No injuries were reported in West Unity, either.