Batavia PD officers were kept busy this afternoon just trying to keep drivers from boating through an obviously flooded Oak Street.
Even once the street was closed by authorities, drivers still wanted to head either north or south.
Shawn Hargrave, who lives across from Hackett TV on Walnut, watched the cars go by and the police try to deal with it.
For awhile, there was an officer parked in front of her house, blocking traffic before the signs went up.
"There were a lot of people pulling up, walking to his window and complaining that they couldn't drive through," she said.
Once the signs went up, that still wasn't a deterrent to drivers who took "street closed" as merely a suggestion.
"We watched a newer Jeep come down and the driver stopped and he got out and moved the barriers," Hargrave said. "Unfortunately, he left the barricade open and some cars almost got stuck in the floodwaters."
Once the signs were up on the south side of the flooded section of street, a police officer still needed to be stationed on the north side to keep drivers from trying to go around the barricades.
Hargrave watched northbound driver after driver roll up to the barricades in front of her house and seemingly contemplate whether to go through before deciding to turn around.
Perhaps the most frustrated drivers to come up to the barricade were truck drivers.
The drivers were likely trying to make their way toward Pavilion, but hit the road closed sign on Route 20 at the bridge over the Tonawanda just west of Brookville Road, Alexander.
They got off Route 20 and headed north.
When they hit the road closed sign on Route 98, they had to back up all the way to First Student's parking lot in order to turn around.
Hargrave said she called NYS DOT to suggest truckers be redirected, but the DOT never responded with its own sign.
Tim Yaeger, emergency coordinator for Genesee County, and Jim Bouton, also a coordinator with the Office of Emergency Management, set up a message board sign at Route 98 and Route 20 trying to warn truckers that the road was close ahead.
But even after the sign was up, truckers still headed north. Yaeger said he was going to try to get a "local traffic only" sign posted either at Pike Road or Rose Road to encourage truckers to turn left onto those roads. The detour would lead them to Route 5 so they could resume their eastward travels.
Emergency Management acquired the $1,500 sign 18 months ago with Homeland Security grant money to use for volunteer recruitment but this was the second time it's been pressed into service an emergency.
Flooding on the Tonawanda is expected to peak at 12 feet at 7 tonight.
Yaeger and Bouton setting up road closed sign.
Below are photos submitted by Walnut Street resident Krystle Robinson of activity on Walnut Street this afternoon. Cars going through the water may have been going through at times when barriers were not in place.