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      Flooding remains concern as rain continues to fall

      Parts of the Boardman River flooded last week from above average snow melt, but rain could make problems worse for homeowners along rivers in the Lower Peninsula.

      Flooding remains a concern across parts of Northern Michigan through Friday morning as rounds of heavy rain continue to fall. The National Weather Service has cancelled the Flood Watch for the Eastern U.P., but the remainder of the region remains under a Flood Watch through Saturday morning.

      The worst of the flooding as of Thursday morning has been downstate in the Grand Rapids area where a small bridge collapsed over the Thornapple River isolating 15 homes there. There have also been reports in that region of cars under water and even part of US-131 closing due to flooding. The town of Hopkins downstate reported over 4" of rain with the worst flooding there since 1997.

      For Northern Michigan, we still believe the heaviest rain will fall along/south of highway M-72 with lighter totals further north. While thunderstorms are possible, the risk for severe weather should be focused across Southern Michigan later on Thursday.

      Local rivers that we are monitoring for rapid rises and potential flooding include the Manistee, the Muskegon, the Chippewa, the Au Sable, and the Pere Marquette including others in these drainage basins.

      Newaygo County has issued a local state of emergency and executive order closing down all township and county owned river access on the Muskegon River in the county.

      The following roads will also be closed:

      -72nd at Pine in Croton Township

      -Timberview at Thornapple in Brooks Township

      -Sarrell at Bridge Street in the City of Newaygo

      -Felch north of 96th in Garfield Township

      -Main Street and Turner Ave in Bridgeton Township

      The Red Cross is working to open a shelter in Newaygo County to help residents affected by the flooding. The shelter will open at noon on Thursday at TrueNorth Community Services on Warner Ave in Fremont.

      Rain will come to an end later Friday morning and for a time, switch over to snow Friday late afternoon and evening with minor accumulation expected. The sunshine returns Saturday with highs only in the 30's.