Flooding in Milwaukee Metro area leads to road closures

WEST ALLIS/FRANKLIN/OAK CREEK (WITI) -- In West Allis, the rain has led to water worries -- and water has spilled onto the streets. Localized flooding has led to road closures all over the Milwaukee Metro area.

The sounds of the raging Root River is catching the attention of neighbors along its banks. Patti Pehringer says the high water is a new view in Franklin.

"Since I've lived here, which is a little over 20 years, I've never seen it this high. I was just going to walk the puppy, and I heard the water so I figured I'd come see how high it is.  This is really high," Pehringer said.

The usually tame river has risen over its banks. It has been causing headaches for drivers.

"It's been busy, going about looking at water on the roads," John Naplentek with the Franklin Highway Department said.

Naplentek spent much of his day Thursday closing roads and watching water levels. Along 60th Street, the river looks more like a lake. Drivers splashed over the now-covered roadway.

Naplentek says just because Thursday was a mostly dry day, the river may not yet be at its worst.

"Could be by tonight that it is completely over," Naplentek said.

Downstream in Oak Creek, there were more road closures Thursday near Nicholson and County Line Road. So far, while water seems to be just inches from shutting down main roads, major routes remain open.

"This, to me, is about the most I've seen," Pehringer said.

The National Weather Service says Root River levels will drop and then rise again. They expect the river to crest in Franklin at midnight.