State of emergency declared in Leominster due to ‘life-threatening’ flooding, schools closed Tuesday

Local News

Leominster, Fitchburg, and Lunenburg are under a flash flood emergency.

Amid thunderstorms and heavy rainfall Monday evening, Leominster Mayor Dean Mazzarella declared a state of emergency due to extensive flooding in the city.

Mazzarella announced the state of emergency on Facebook at 6:30 p.m. Around 7:45 p.m., Leominster Public Schools Superintendent Paula Deacon announced that city schools would be closed Tuesday because of the flooding.

Just before 9:40 p.m., Mazzarella posted on Facebook that Francis Drake Elementary School at 95 Viscoloid Ave. had opened as an emergency shelter.

“If you don’t have to go out, don’t,” Mazzarella said on Facebook live. “All the streets are flooded.”

The National Weather Service reported just before 10 p.m. Monday that six to nine inches of rain had fallen in northern Worcester County. A flash flood warning is in effect in Leominster, and nearby communities Fitchburg and Lunenburg, until 8 a.m. Tuesday.

The service warned people in the area to move to high ground and not to enter flooded roads.

“This is an extremely dangerous and life-threatening situation. Do not attempt to travel unless you are fleeing an area subject to flooding or under an evacuation order,” it wrote in the flood warning.

Photos and video from the city showed flooded streets where drivers needed rescuing from their cars and backyards and cars submerged in water. Route 2 experienced particularly bad flooding, and was closed in both directions Monday night.

Mazzarella said schools and basements across the city were flooded, and that there are emergency situations happening at a high rise and a nursing home.

“Everything’s just one big lake,” he said.

Mazzarella said all possible police, firefighters, and volunteers had been called in to help people who need rescuing from the flooding. He said he’s in contact with MEMA and hopes to get help from other communities.

See more photos and videos of the flooding: