Blizzard brings coastal flooding to Kent, Sussex communities

BOWERS — While a raging nor’easter is battering Sussex County today, coastal communities in Kent also are dealing with flooding.

Bowers Fire Chief Phillip Pennington said the water has risen to flood some roadways, bringing debris with it.

“It’s just a real mess,” he said this afternoon.

Firefighters have responded to gas leaks and, in one case, to help a man whose car was trapped by water.

Chief Pennington said a man apparently got in his car but “water breached over top of dunes” and trapped him in the vehicle. Officers responded but he was able to free himself and make it back inside his house before they arrived.

Firefighters did checks on area homes earlier to ensure everyone was safe and secure.

South Bowers may have suffered some serious flooding as well, with reported evacuations, but Chief Pennington could not confirm those reports. He said he hopes the waters recede by Sunday morning.

Meanwhile, there was a near-record level of 9.2 feet at Lewes at the 8 a.m. high tide — just shy of the 9.22-foot record set in the historic March 1962 nor’easter,  according to Sussex County Emergency operations,

Numerous dune breaches have occurred along the Atlantic coast, forcing the closure of Del. 1 south of Dewey Beach; low-lying communities around the Inland Bays are experiencing significant flooding; and nearly 8,000 Delaware Electric Cooperative and Delmarva Power customers are without power throughout the county. Those power losses are largely due to downed trees and power lines, according to a news release from the Sussex emergency center.

The storm is expected to continue overnight.

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