A stream behind McDonald’s restaurant and Cumberland Farms off China Road in Winslow overflowed in Tuesday’s heavy rainstorm, sending water rushing over China Road into a parking lot and causing flooding in some places 3 feet deep.

“It’s just one of those freak events,” interim Winslow Town Manager Paul Fongemie said Wednesday. “The drainage system just couldn’t keep up.”

Fongemie, who is Winslow’s public works director, said the unnamed stream crosses Clifford Avenue and Cushman Road. It has overflowed three or four times in his nine years working for the town, but never like it did on Tuesday.


“I think this was the worst,” he said. “They said the water was up there on the hood of a Subaru that tried to get through it.”

Other area towns did not seem to bear the brunt of the storm like Winslow did. The rain started coming down hard around 4 p.m., and roads around the flooding site had to be closed off, according to Fongemie. He said they were not reopened until about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday. About 5 inches of rain fell.


The catch basins in the area were overwhelmed by the amount of rain and stream overflow, and it took some time for them to drain, Fongemie said. He said firefighters were knee-deep in water, trying to locate the catch basins. The Police Department also responded.

“The Fire Department was good,” he said. “They washed silt to the side that got into the road.”

Eventually, the catch basins caught up and the water started to drain. Before that, however, the area looked like a lake.

“It was not a pretty scene,” Fongemie said. “We had one guy out there fishing off the sidewalk.”

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