MARQUETTE COUNTY, Mich. (WJMN) – On Monday July 18, Governor Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Marquette County. This was issued to help with repairing the damage from a flash flood that happened on May 12 earlier this year.

“We know that small rural communities already have small budgets and big problems with just kind of keeping up with infrastructure as a whole,” said Craig Cugini, the Ishpeming City Manager. “So, to have such a big impact from a single storm is devastating to a budget if we don’t have tools like this. So, we’re very excited that the tools are available and that we look forward to trying to figure out how to navigate the next unknowns to get this restored.”

Marquette County issued a state of emergency on May 24th to help fix the roads in the city of Ishpeming and Marquette County. The damage proved to be too widespread for only local efforts to repair. By issuing the state of emergency, Gov. Whitmer is authorizing the Michigan State Police Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division to coordinate state efforts with local agencies to repair damage.

“The first step is getting those numbers out to our emergency management and homeland security division where they can look at what the cost is going to be to repair, lets say, a road that may have been damaged from the floods or during the storm,” said Lieutenant Mark Giannunzio from the State Police Post in Negaunee. ” We need to know those, the numbers and how much that’s going to cost so we can go into emergency management funding and get reimbursed to those communities to get those areas fixed.”

Water is powerful and flash flooding can change landscapes in a blink of an eye. The flood waters move rapidly and can destroy roads, wash away houses and cars, and rip trees from the ground. So, if you are caught in a flash flood, what can you do to get out of it?

“If you ever find yourself in the situation where your car is starting to float away, you want to find someway, or someway, or a way to get out of your car and hold on to something until rescue folks can get to you,” said Matt Zika, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service.

After a damaging event like this, the Governor’s office says state efforts will help tremendously to repair the roads and to protect the health, safety and property of the community.