CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Thursday night’s flash flooding gave some dairy farmers in Wayne County quite a scare. Water spilled over the banks of a creek near Waymart and right into a barn full of cows.
The farmers say the water was quickly rising in that dairy barn in Creamton overnight, so they had to get all the cows out. That wasn’t easy. People were panicked. Cows were panicked, and the water just wouldn’t stop.
And, in the middle of all that, came a little surprise. A cow was in labor with a new calf.
Cleanup work will likely continue for weeks around the barn along Route 247 in Clinton Township, north of Waymart.
“It was a nightmare. Four foot of water, it’s the middle of the night, you’re scared. You don’t know what to do and hope for the best,” said Brian Non.
The water came from a stream that came roaring out of its banks, right down through the farm, right at a barn that was full of cows.
“And, the water was coming down and running right up against the front of door of the barn,” said dairy farmer Kevin Weist, “and I came over and checked the cows, and they were standing in two and a half feet of water and you have to get them all out.”
Weist was emotional talking about getting nervous cows away from rising water, out of the flooding barn.
“It’s a difficult thing you don’t want to go through, especially when you’re not used to it.”
In the middle of all the flooding came yet another surprise. A calf decided it was time to come into the world. Her mom was in labor. The little one now has an appropriate name.
“River. She’s going to be here for a long time,” said Weist.
Despite it all, all the cows were back in the soaked barn only hours later, after a big effort to shovel out muck and clear debris. Those cows had to be milked.
Even though weeks of cleanup come right in the middle of when they should be harvesting hay, there are few complaints on the flooded farm. Little River is helping them focus on the good.
The farm lost several fields of hay and has a lot of cleanup work to do now, but no cows or people were hurt. And, River the calf, born during the flood, is doing just fine.