Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Floodwaters recede in Progress Village, but not in Ruskin

Anthony Bigger, left, and friend Marc Smith paddle through standing water along 32nd Street SE in Ruskin Thursday afternoon as they make their way to their van to pick up Bigger’s wife from work.

BRIAN BLANCO | Special to the Times

Anthony Bigger, left, and friend Marc Smith paddle through standing water along 32nd Street SE in Ruskin Thursday afternoon as they make their way to their van to pick up Bigger’s wife from work.

RUSKIN — Residents showed little concern Thursday as the Little Manatee River flooded yards and streets in the aftermath of heavy rainfall.

The river, which floods when it reaches 11 feet in Ruskin, stood at just less than 14 feet Thursday afternoon. It was expected to reach 14.7 feet early today, said John McMichael, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Ruskin. A flood warning is in effect in the area until Sunday morning.

Flooding is typical in the 32nd Street area this time of year, residents said. Most trailers in the neighborhood are elevated to avoid flood damage.

Some roads near the river were still passable Thursday afternoon, but 42nd Avenue appeared to be almost 2 feet underwater.

Darren King's yard, which backs up to the Little Manatee, was submerged. His trailer is several feet above ground, so he wasn't worried about water entering the home.

King, like his neighbors, moved his car a few blocks up the road to drier ground. If he needs to leave, he'll rely on a kayak.

"That's the mode of transportation for the next couple of days," he said. "We'll be coming in and out by boat."

Flooding should subside by Saturday afternoon, McMichael said.

In the Progress Village area just east of Tampa, roads that had been submerged began to dry out Thursday. Fifteen families were evacuated from homes on 82nd Street on Wednesday after heavy rains flooded the neighborhood. But Endive Avenue remained about 6 inches underwater, and county officials closed nearby Allamanda Avenue.

County Commissioner Kevin White said he fielded about 250 complaints from residents who blamed the flooding on a lack of maintenance along Archie Creek. The creek drains stormwater from Progress Village into Tampa Bay.

Crews were monitoring the creek and plan to check it for debris today, county public works spokesman John Newton said. The rain caused the creek to overflow and left no place for the water to be pumped, Newton said.

"There's not much we can do to the creek," he said. "It's flowing as the water recedes."

Charles Lee Guilford said floodwater reached the front door and crept inside, damaging the carpet in his Endive Avenue home. He compared the flood to one from a 1960s hurricane.

"This is the worst it's been since I've been here," said Guilford, 78.

Kevin Smetana can be reached at or (813) 661-2439.

Floodwaters recede in Progress Village, but not in Ruskin 07/02/09 [Last modified: Thursday, July 2, 2009 7:44pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Trump sprinkles political attacks into Scout Jamboree speech

    GLEN JEAN, W.Va. — Ahead of President Donald Trump's appearance Monday at the National Scout Jamboree in West Virginia, the troops were offered some advice on the gathering's official blog: Fully hydrate. Be "courteous" and "kind." And avoid the kind of divisive chants heard during the 2016 campaign such as "build …

    President Donald Trump addresses the Boy Scouts of America's 2017 National Scout Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel National Scout Reserve in Glen Jean, W.Va., July 24, 2017. [New York Times]
  2. Trump, seething about attorney general, speculates about firing Sessions, sources say

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has spoken with advisers about firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions, as he continues to rage against Sessions' decision to recuse himself from all matters related to the Russia investigation.

  3. John McCain to return to Senate for health care vote

    WASHINGTON — The Senate plans to vote Tuesday to try to advance a sweeping rewrite of the nation's health-care laws with the last-minute arrival of Sen. John McCain — but tough talk from President Donald Trump won no new public support from skeptical GOP senators for the flagging effort that all but …

  4. Last orca calf born in captivity at a SeaWorld park dies


    ORLANDO — The last killer whale born in captivity under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program died Monday at the company's San Antonio, Texas, park, SeaWorld said.

    Thet orca Takara helps guide her newborn, Kyara, to the water's surface at SeaWorld San Antonio in San Antonio, Texas, in April. Kyara was the final killer whale born under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program. The Orlando-based company says 3-month-old Kyara died Monday. [Chris Gotshall/SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment via AP]
  5. Blake Snell steps up, but Rays lose to Orioles anyway (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Blake Snell stepped up when he had to Monday and delivered an impressive career-high seven-plus innings for the Rays. That it wasn't enough in what ended up a 5-0 loss to the Orioles that was their season-high fifth straight is symptomatic of the mess they are in right now.

    Tim Beckham stands hands on hips after being doubled off first.