Alachua County residents rescued from flooded homes

Tropical Storm Elsa leaves flooding, toppled trees in Alachua County

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Alachua County Sheriff's Office

"This afternoon, during the peak of Elsa’s wrath, Deputies Shaun McGuigan, Sergeant Todd Thomas, and Christopher Bennett assisted in the evacuation of Tracey Curtis from her residence as the rising floodwaters overtook her property located in northwest Gainesville." - Alachua County Sheriff's Office

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla.Tropical Storm Elsa left flooding and downed trees and power lines in Alachua County on Wednesday.

The Alachua County Sheriff’s Office had a busy day, with deputies rescuing people from flooded homes and clearing trees from roads.

Art Forgey, with the Sheriff’s Office, said that between 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., they had more than 40 calls about flooding. Forgey said first responders had to make about four assists from homes. Forgey said no one was hurt.

Cindy Lacoste, who lived in a neighborhood that flooded, said her neighbors -- a couple in their 90s -- had to be rescued by first responders after their home flooded.

“Everybody’s safe. That’s all that matters. Houses can be replaced and fixed -- lives can’t,” Lacoste said. “So this is just water.”

Forgey also said the Sheriff’s Office had 20 calls about downed trees and 12 calls about downed power lines.

Deputies said there was a tree blocking Wacahoota Road and a broken power pole. The Sheriff’s Office also said there was flooding on West Newberry Road.

IMAGES: Flooding, downed trees in Alachua County

Residents were reminded to not drive through standing water if the depth is unknown. Those out and about were encouraged to avoid downed power lines and fallen branches and trees. Call 311 for information and 911 to report emergencies.

According to Gainesville Regional Utilities, there were 200 homes without power as of 7 p.m. and there were about 680 altogether Wednesday.

Alachua County Public Schools and summer programs, including meal distribution, will resume as normal Thursday.

About the Authors:

Carianne Luter is a social media producer for News4Jax and has worked at Channel 4 since December 2015. She graduated from the University of North Florida with a communication degree.

Renee Beninate is a Florida native and award-winning reporter who joined the News4Jax team in June 2021.