Flood warning issued for Kent, Ottawa counties

Alexander Sinn • Updated Feb 8, 2019 at 1:59 PM

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning Friday morning for the Grand River in Kent and Ottawa counties. 


This warning will be in effect until the river falls below its flood stage.


The Grand River reached its flood stage of 13.3 feet at Robinson Township on Friday. It is expected to crest at 13.6 feet Saturday before subsiding into next week.

No widespread flooding is expected, according to Ottawa County officials, but low-line flooding may cause 3-6 inches in river rise through Monday.

The river at Comstock Park was measured Friday just a few inches short of its flood stage of 12 feet. The forecast is for it to creep just above the flood stage Saturday before falling beginning Sunday afternoon or evening.

Recent rounds of heavy rainfall have combined with the huge snowmelt from last weekend to bring portions of the Grand River to just above the flood stage. The most vulnerable neighborhoods along the river will see minor flooding as the river rises a few more inches and then stays high through the weekend. No widespread flooding is expected along the river.

The National Weather Service says that even 6 inches of fast-moving flood water can knock you off your feet, and a depth of 2 feet will float your car. Never try to walk, swim or drive through such swift water.

If you come upon flood waters, stop, turn around and go another way.

Ottawa County Emergency Management Director Nick Bonstell said the county’s priority right now is restoring power to thousands in the region, after power lines were brought down during two bouts of freezing rain this past week.

A drop in temperatures into the teens, snow and wind could disrupt restoration efforts by Consumers Energy. Most customers could be without power until late Sunday.

Ottawa County and the American Red Cross have established an emergency shelter in the northeast region of the county. If you have a long-term power outage and need emergency shelter, call the Ottawa County Central Dispatch non-emergency number: 800-249-0911 or 616-994-7850.

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