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Town helps kids get home across river

April 27, 2011
By MIKE LYNCH - Outdoors Writer ( , Adirondack Daily Enterprise

BLOOMINGDALE - Flooding on Moose Pond Road has caused some people to evacuate their homes while others have decided to hunker down and wait for the Saranac River to recede.

One of those families that is staying home is the Kanzes, who live on a high point of land. Their house is in good shape, but the Saranac River has flooded the Moose Pond Road, which leads to the house.

The Kanze family was able to get across the river in their cars Wednesday morning, but as water rose in the afternoon, it caused a dilemma for some family members, including the children coming home from school.

Article Photos

Five-year-old Tasman Kanze, shown in the side-view mirror, and her 7-year-old brother Ned get a ride home after school across a flooded section of Moose Pond Road in Bloomingdale Wednesday afternoon. The pair are riding in a pickup truck driven by St. Armand highway worker Tim Reyell, who met their school bus at 3:30 p.m. The children were greeted on the other side of the Saranac River by their father, Ed Kanze.
(Enterprise photo — Mike Lynch)

The town of St. Armand highway department offered some assistance and met the two children - Ned, 7, and Tasman, 5 - at their school bus stop on Moose Pond Road. Town worker Tim Reyell then drove the children across the flooded road in a pickup truck escorted by a bucket loader.

Reyell, who drove through more than a foot of water, took a test run before taking the children across to make sure it was safe.

"They're amazingly good," Ed Kanze said of the town workers. "Joyce Morency, the town supervisor, she's called here three times today to check on us and to check on our access. She's concerned about my wife getting home from work. You really get good care around here. One the town guys even gave me his home cell phone number if we're in a jam."

Ed Kanze said he had thought he would be able to get the children after school in a canoe, but strong winds made that a less safe option.

Kanze said this isn't the first time he's seen people drive across a river.

"My wife and I drove all over Australia one time, and it's common to drive across rivers down there, rivers with crocodiles, too," Kanze said. "You drive very slowly because you don't want to splash water up on your ignition wires and then have your car stall. It takes a fair amount to stop the car, but if you get the electrical system wet it's just going to stop dead, and then you have a problem."

Kanze said the family has plenty of food and plans to hunker down Thursday but may try to find a way across the river, if necessary.

Morency said there are a few other homeowners in the Moose Pond area who plan to stay in their homes. She said flooding on the road occurs there almost every spring and the people are used to it.

"A few people are staying in, but they're on the other side, and they have their groceries and their children with them, and they won't try to go out until the water goes back down," Morency said. "We did have to convince a few people (right on the river) to move out."


Contact Mike Lynch at 891-2600 ext. 28 or



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