Eight feet of water ruin South Bend basement in flood

Published: Aug. 17, 2016 at 1:26 AM EDT
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A South Bend family is trying to figure out the next step after overnight flooding ravaged their basement and many belongings, including the furnace, family keepsakes, and clothes.

"You go to work everyday to get ahead -- not fall behind," said Ernie Burus, a Royal Oak Estates homeowner. "Stuff like this puts you further and further behind."

Around 7:30 a.m., Burus came home after a long night of work only to find "lakefront property" outside. Buckhorn Drive was flooded. He had seen similar real estate, in the past. What Burus found inside his home was a first.

"I opened the door and saw I had eight feet of water in my basement," said Burus.

Apparently, rain bust the egress window, spilling into the bottom floor, yellowing books, caking family clothes in debris, and fading family photos into memories.

"Works can't speak for the emotions I feel," said Burus.

City of South Bend officials held another news conference on Tuesday to address flood restoration efforts.

"As we get a clearer picture of how many actual people are displaced, this community's going to step up and find ways to support them," said Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D).

The Director of Public Works added crews are working longer hours until the floods subside.

"That entails keeping catch basins clean and keep the storm sewers flowing as quickly as possible but also the grates on the ditches, [making] sure they're kept clean," described Eric Horvath, who oversees Public Works.

There will be a special collection for trash as a result of the recent flooding. Call the 311 hotline.