FINDLAY -- After three days of flooding, there's good news for Findlay. The Blanchard River has now crested in Findlay at just about 18.5 feet, and the water has started to go down. The bad news -- now the flood is moving downstream to Ottawa.
The Blanchard River begins near the city of Kenton before winding through Findlay. It flows generally north for its first few miles before turning to the west to flow through Ottawa, then join the Auglaize River.
Several hundred people remain out of their homes in Findlay, staying with friends, relatives, and in shelters. Firefighters and a volunteer armada yesterday navigated boats through streets awash in waist-deep water to rescue neighbors and their pets from porches.
Ohio Governor Ted Strickland has declared states of emergency in counties across northwest and north-central Ohio.
Meanwhile, a state of emergency is in effect for Ottawa, and the Blanchard River there has not yet crested. Right now, the level is listed right around 31 feet, which is about 8 feet above flood stage. There's now word yet on exactly when the Blanchard will crest in Ottawa, and begin to recede.
The Putname County Sheriff's Office tells us there's really no one getting in our out of the village right now. The rescue effort was stopped last night, as people decided to ride out the high water at home.
Crews will be back in starting this morning to check on those who stayed behind.
We're told this is the worst flooding in Ottawa since 1931. Shelters have been set up in following locations:
- Trinity United Methodist Church
- Boy Scout House
Near Water Works Park
Count on News 11 to follow this story as it develops.