Flooding shuts down the town of Virgil; flood watch issued for Cortland County

Flooding on Route 215 in Virgil early Friday evening (Peter Blanchard/Cortland Voice)

Emergency officials are asking drivers to avoid the town of Virgil after a batch of heavy rain led to flash flooding early Friday evening.

At around 4:45 p.m., emergency crews shut down the intersection of Kohne Road and State Route 392 in Virgil after flooding made the road impassable, according to emergency radio reports. The Dryden Fire Department has been called to the area to assist the Virgil Fire Department.

"The town's completely flooded," said Virgil Fire Chief Jereme Stiles. "Every road is in disarray at the moment."

Stiles said some residents were rescued from their homes with assistance from the Cortland Fire Department's Swift Water Rescue Team. An overflowing creek on Kohne Road forced some residents to stay inside their homes until conditions improved, the Cortland County 911 Center confirmed.

"Major roads have been ripped up because the bridges and culvert pipes can't take anymore," Stiles said. "Most roads in the town are not passable right now."

A flash flood warning was issued for Cortland County shortly before 5 p.m. and remained in effect until 7 p.m. A flood watch will remain in effect until 8 p.m.

The Cortlandville and Marathon fire departments have also been called to assist emergency crews in Virgil. Stiles said the flooding is the worst he's ever seen in the town.

"We've had flooding in the past, but nothing to this magnitude," he said. "This is going to take time."

A supervisor with the 911 Center could not state how many roads are closed, but said drivers should avoid the town of Virgil and the town of Harford, as well as parts of Marathon and Lapeer.

Crews from the New York State Department of Transportation are working with area fire departments to assist those who have been affected by the flooding.

The village of Moravia has also been impacted by flooding.