By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — While southern Minnesota was hit hard by yesterday’s storms, some metro cities were dealing with severe weather as well.

West of Minneapolis, flash flooding made for tough driving at Highway 100 near County Road 81. Not far from there, a Robbinsdale neighborhood was hit hard.

“Everywhere we went it was water everywhere. We joke that we have lakefront property. We call it Chowen Lake. It was literally a lake,” Jon Timmerman said.

But that didn’t stop drivers from taking chances. When the heavy rains come, Timmerman puts out his saw horses to block off Chowen Avenue. He even stands in the street to show that the water is up to his chest. Still, not everyone pays attention.

“On the right you use the geyser that’s helping fill the ‘lake.’ And then the car comes through and he makes it, but I’d be a little curious about the water damage in that car later,” said Timmerman while watching a video his wife Megan captured.

A little while later, another driver comes through who wasn’t as lucky.

“She got to my driveway. My driveway is the kill zone. It’s the deepest here and all of the sudden she starts floating and the car is toast,” said Timmerman, looking at a picture he took on his phone.

Fortunately, the woman wasn’t hurt, but it’s a scenario George Westlund has watched play out for years.

“The further they get into it, they realize they made a mistake,” Westlund said. “The water is coming over the headlights and over the hood and the car is totaled.”

The low point in the road combined with heavy rains are too much for the storm drain to handle. On Thursday night, Westlund watched the water line end just a couple feet from his house.

He said he would gladly give up the Lake Chowen nickname for a dryer street.

“This is as high as I’ve seen it,” Westlund said.

Neighbors said flash flooding like this usually happens a few times a year. They are hoping the city will help them fix the problem in the future.

John Lauritsen