Lake Erie waves surge past seawall

Associated Press

Luna Pier – Inmates from a county jail and volunteers helped fill sandbags along part of the Lake Erie shoreline in southeastern Michigan as waves burst through a damaged seawall, flooding neighborhoods.

Some residents in Frenchtown Township’s Grand Beach subdivision and Allen’s Cove in Luna Pier also were evacuated Friday due to the rising water, the Monroe News reported.

Storm pumps, meanwhile, were placed along the shoreline to help remove lake water from around homes.

“With the lake being this high, if the dikes aren’t at a sufficient height to keep the water out, our pumps can’t handle” the water coming in, Monroe County Drain Commissioner David Thompson said. “No system can handle that much water coming over.”

“We’re doing the best we can do, putting our manpower and resources where we can do the most good,” Thompson added.

Frenchtown Township and Luna Pier are southwest of Detroit and just north of the state line with Ohio.

Parts of the seawall were damaged during an April 15 storm, allowing waves and water from the lake to gush through gaps and around homes, garages and vehicles close to the lakefront.

Some roads and streets were closed to traffic because of the high water.

The National Weather Service issued a flood advisory Friday morning for the lakeshore. The advisory warns of high waves and high water levels. Wind gusts were expected to produce waves of 3 to 5 feet, and as high as 7 feet.

Grand Beach resident Nicholas Vince said Friday that he hired a contractor to repair his part of the damaged seawall. Vince owns about 80 feet of the seawall.

“I’m being harmed the most,” he said as lake water flooded his yard. “I’m sorry people are suffering because the wall fell down, but I’m suffering, too.”