People evacuated in Athol after broken ice jam causes flooding concerns

ATHOL, Mass. (WHDH) — Residents in Athol were evacuated over the weekend after a massive piece of ice broke free from the Millers River, causing concerns about flooding.

Twenty-six people were evacuated from the Morton Meadows complex Saturday morning due to concerns the river could flood.

“There isn’t very much room under that bridge, it was budding up against it. I’m a little concerned,” said Beverly Politano, who had to evacuate. Her house was not affected.

The ice did cause damage across town. On Monday, the Exchange Street Bridge remained closed after ice broke off fasteners to a water main pipe under the bridge. Town Manager Shaun Suhoski said the closure will remain in effect until the state’s Department of Transportation (MassDOT) can inspect and clear the bridge.

Athol Fire Chief John Duguay said residents are advised to stay away from the river because the ice jam remains.


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