FLOODING OF OTTAWA, OHIO PUTNAM COUNTY AUGUST 2007 By: BRIAN KISSELL INTERNATIONAL STUDIES COLLEGE OF ARTS and SCIENCES Flood: Know Your Terms • Flood Watch: Flooding is possible. Tune in to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information. • Flash Flood Watch: Flash flooding is possible. Be prepared to move to higher ground; listen to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information. • Flood Warning: Flooding is occurring or will occur soon; if advised to evacuate, do so immediately. • Flash Flood Warning: A flash flood is occurring; seek higher ground on foot immediately. • Floods can take several hours to days to develop. Flash floods can take only a few minutes to hours to develop. • NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration): Provides timely and precise weather, water, and climate forecasts, as well as monitors the environment and examines changes in the oceans. • NWS (National Weather Service): Provides current official weather warnings, observations, and forecasts across the United States. (Terms courtesy of FEMA and Ohio EMA) NORTHWEST OHIO (Maps courtesy of www.answers.com) HISTORY OF OTTAWA, OHIO • In the summer of 1834, Michael Row, arrived with his family. That summer the town was surveyed, and Row purchased the first lot, where he erected the Row Tavern. • The post office was established in 1837 as Buckeye, since there already was an Ottawa. In 1862 it officially became Ottawa. After a fiercely contested battle, which lasted several years, the county seat was moved to Ottawa, the geographic center of the county. • The coming of the railroads made it the transportation center of the county, also. The newspaper also moved to Ottawa and became known as the Putnam County Sentinel. It is a vigorous weekly paper today. • Ottawa’s main occupation would the family farms passed down from generation to generation. Most of the industry that was once there have closed there doors and shipped the jobs overseas. • Today, the actual Village of Ottawa is 3.9 square miles with 0.04 square miles of that being water. • The population, according to the 2000 U.S. Census Bureau is 4367 people. • Ottawa has one high school that shares with a neighboring town, called Ottawa- Glandorf High School. Two kindergarten through 8th grade schools, (1) Ottawa Public Schools (2) Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic School. OTTAWA FLOODING AUGUST 21-25, 2007 • Pictures are of Main Street in downtown Ottawa. Many businesses were affected by the flooding. As you can see from the pictures many of those business needed to be closed for an extended period of time to repair the damages from the flood. If you look close enough you can see a plant in a pot floating in the middle of Main Street by the railroad crossing barrier arm. • (Pictures courtesy of www.accessottawa.com) OTTAWA FLOODING AUGUST 21-25, 2007 • (Top Left) Picture is of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad tracks that cross Main Street in downtown Ottawa. By the pictures you can tell that the flooding even affected the passage of the trains. • (Bottom Left) Some of the houses close to the Blanchard River had to be evacuated by helicopter when boats were unable to reach them. • (Pictures courtesy of www.accessottawa.com) PUBLIC SCHOOL OFFICIALS HELP OUT FLOODED PAROCHIAL SCHOOL STUDENTS BY SHARING SCHOOL CLASSROOMS AND GYMNASIUM • (Top Left) Students from Ss. Peter and Paul Junior High have class in a makeshift classroom in Ottawa-Glandorf’s High School gymnasium. • (Bottom Left) William Kuhlman, principal of Ss. Peter and Paul, said the public schools’ help has been most welcome. ‘They’re our neighbors,’ said Denise Phillips, principal of Ottawa Elementary. ( THE BLADE/DAVE ZAPOTOSKY ) • (Pictures courtesy of www.accessottawa.com) FACTS OF THE FLOOD FOR AUGUST 21-25, 2007 • TOTAL RAINFALL • TOTAL DAMAGES IN $$$ TO HOMEOWNERS AND LOCAL BUSINESSES • FEMA AND SBA AID TO VICTIMS JUST 6 MONTHS LATER MORE FLOODING FOR OTTAWA FEBRUARY 6-8, 2008 (Pictures courtesy of www.accessottawa.com) FACTS OF THE FLOOD FOR FEBRUARY 6-8, 2008 • The Blanchard River in Ottawa crested Thursday at 29.34 feet, more than six feet above the 23-foot flood stage. • The flood in August 2007 was much more damaging and the worst since 1913. (Information gathered from www.cresent-news.com) WHAT NEXT? • Over the next five years the United States Army Corps of Engineers will be conducting studies, designing, planning, and building what is needed to prevent future flooding. They estimate spending between $90-$93 million for flood mitigation projects.
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