Vermont Public is independent, community-supported media, serving Vermont with trusted, relevant and essential information. We share stories that bring people together, from every corner of our region. New to Vermont Public? Start here.

© 2024 Vermont Public | 365 Troy Ave. Colchester, VT 05446

Public Files:

For assistance accessing our public files, please contact or call 802-655-9451.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Flood warnings continue Tuesday morning after rain and snow melt across Vermont

A gray photo of mountains, trees and floodwaters in a small valley.
Sophie Stephens
Vermont Public
Rainy conditions and some standing water can be seen from I-89 North near Waterbury on Monday.

A winter storm that began Sunday brought widespread flooding to Vermont Monday and overnight. Floodwaters are mostly receding Tuesday morning.

While rainfall totals were lower than what the Green Mountain State saw during July’s historic flooding, snowmelt added to the water levels of rivers and streams across the state.

In some communities, people were evacuated, roads were washed out and the state performed several swift water rescues. No storm-related injuries or deaths have been reported.

Vermont saw between 2 and 3 inches of rainfall across most of the state, combined with additional water from snowmelt.

"In some places you can think of the total amount of water that was going into the rivers on a basin average, could have been up as high as 4 to 5 inches," said Conor Lahiff, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Burlington.

The wet conditions were part of a big system with a lot of moisture from the tropics that hit much of the northeast.

Early Monday morning, high winds knocked power out for about 10,000 homes.

But the biggest impact appears to be flooding.

"Although there will be damage to infrastructure, homes and businesses, we do not expect this to be the same scale as July."
Gov. Phil Scott

Monday night during a press conference, Gov. Phil Scott said this event may be bringing back memories of July’s historic flooding.

"Although there will be damage to infrastructure, homes and businesses, we do not expect this to be the same scale as July," Scott said. "That being said, some of the places that were impacted in July are currently experiencing flooding once again. So for them, this is July. And it’s a real gut punch."

This storm had a lot less rainfall than this summer — when there was 5 to 9 inches of rain over two days in July. But with this storm, there was also snowmelt in the mix — on places like Mount Mansfield, where as much as 9 inches of snow melted.

"We had warm temperatures," said Marlon Verasamy, with the National Weather Service. "That widespread rainfall, especially at the higher elevations, is melting that snow, it's bringing that snow from the high elevations down into the valleys into the rivers and tributaries."

Some communities that were hit hard in July did see some flooding. In Montpelier, city officials Monday afternoon said some downtown businesses had water coming into their basements — and they were asking people to move their vehicles to higher ground on Monday.

A photo of people in reflective vests unloading bags from a green truck in front of a brick building in the rain.
Zoe McDonald
Vermont Public
Montpelier's Department of Public Works was filling sandbags on Monday which residents can pick up at the "Volunteer Hub" in front of City Hall.

The Red Cross set up an emergency shelter in Barre, where about 25 people had checked in yesterday evening.

“Some people I’ve talked to said they were unable to get to their houses because the roads were flooded, so they came here," said Al Hermsen, a volunteer with Disaster Services.

In Jamaica, a swift-water rescue team pulled three people from a house around 1 p.m. Monday, according to Vermont Emergency Management. There was a mudslide in St. Johnsbury. And as the Mad River jumped its banks, roads throughout Moretown were closed. Some residents were ordered to evacuate. And students at Moretown Elementary School were sent home.

A boiler in the school was under about 3 feet of water Monday morning, according to the fire chief there.

In southern Vermont, Brattleboro got more than 4 inches of rain. West Brattleboro was hit particularly hard. Residents at the Mountain Home mobile home park were asked to evacuate Monday morning, and 12 homes were flooded when Whetstone Brook overflowed its banks.

"In this particular event, the ground saturation was already at a high level, and the 4 inches of rain that we received and the neighboring communities just above the Whetstone also received, it just created this, this particular flooding event," said Chuck Keir, Brattleboro's assistant fire chief.

By Monday afternoon, waters had subsided and park residents were allowed to return home.

"The ground saturation was already at a high level, and the 4 inches of rain that we received and the neighboring communities just above the Whetstone also received, it just created this, this particular flooding event."
Chuck Keir, Brattleboro assistant fire chief

Tuesday morning, the National Weather Service is reporting that the Lamoille River near Johnson and Jefferson reached major flood stage, and the Winooski River at Essex Junction also reached major flood stage. Dozens of roads across the state are still closed. Many schools also remain closed.

Lahiff, with the National Weather Service, early Tuesday morning said the Winooski Rive in Essex Junction should hit its crest, and many warnings for other rivers have been removed after falling below flood levels.

He added that the rain yesterday was at times more intense than predicted and there was more snow melt than expected.

"A lot of that has to do with the early season snow pack that we don't typically have -- there was a lot of snow in the upper elevations," Lahiff said. " It wasn't sampled very well in our snow melt modeling how much was going to come out of the snow pack."

State officials Monday night said they expect to hear about quite a bit more damage, but the full extent won’t be known until they get out there Tuesday. The good news is after today, the National Weather Service says we're looking at pretty dry conditions for the rest of the week.

You can find more about this storm and live updates at

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message.

Lola Duffort and Abagael Giles also contributed reporting.

Lexi covers science and health stories for Vermont Public.
Latest Stories