Neighbor forced to boat through Deer Run neighborhood after floods worsen

Berm breaks causing more flooding for Deer Run

THE ACREAGE, Fla. - With nowhere to go, water is overtaking berm and seeping into neighborhoods, meaning the flooding problem is only getting worse.

It's that way for the Deer Run community which neighbors Lion Country Safari.

The water was waist deep in most areas and was continuing to raise so for many people the only way around the neighborhood was by boat.

One of those people was Laurelle Balog and her husband.

They cranked up their motor and paddled to meet NewsChannel 5 reporter Ryan Calhoun and had to boat to get back home.

When they arrived at their road, Laurelle's husband had to walk the boat up their drive way.

As he walked up and pulled the boat in the water was nearly waist high on him.

Their home, which is safe from the water because it is on stilts, is like it's on its own little island. 

"I went to bed praying can the water just go down an inch instead it went up an inch and a half," Balog said.

Balog said that's because neighboring berm have overflowed into their community.

"Lion Country Safari. Part of their dyke broke so they're flooding us," Balog said. "Indian Trail (Improvement district). Part of their dyke broke and they're flooding us."

It makes it so a boating trip is the only way to see her neighbors.

As we rode with her on a boat she yelled to one neighbor, "You doing alright?"

He answered, "I'm stuck for the past two days. I can't go to work. I can't get out."

For those who don't want to yell, they call Balog, who is the President of the community's property owners association.

Many are trying to find help and asking Balog for help.

Balog is calling on the South Florida Water Management District for help.

"What I hope happens is that water management will come in with auxiliary pumps and tie into our canal and help pump some of this out," she said.

That hasn't happened yet, but it is being worked. 

One problem that they have is the pump they would pump into is flooded so right now the community's canal is flooding into peoples yards.

It is leaving animals stranded, flooding septic tanks and their well water pumps.

"I have no water," Balog said. "My water doesn't work. None of us have water back here."

The only water they do have, is water they don't want.

"At this point it's like what can you do," Balog said. "You're at the mercy of who controls the pumps."

It leaves them stranded with no way out other than a paddle and a boat.


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