City Dock Annapolis, quite flooded by Tuesday evening, was predicted to see 4.5+ feet of flooding overnight. Photo: James Ronayne

PHOTOS: Storm Brings Major Flooding to Bay Waterfronts

A winter storm has been pounding the Chesapeake Bay region Tuesday into Wednesday, hitting the Maryland section of the Bay hardest. But this winter storm doesn’t come with inches of snow (unless you head to western Maryland). It’s causing feet of coastal flooding and wind gusts up to 55 mph.

As of midday Wednesday, the rain has subsided and floodwaters receded, leaving debris and damage behind, along with waterlogged and sunken boats. Many closures remain along Bay waterfronts.

Photos and videos have been coming into Chesapeake Bay Magazine of waterfront businesses and homes with feet of water encroaching. On Tuesday evening, water levels were pushing past the sandbags lining doorways at the shops and restaurants closest to Annapolis City Dock. Bay photographer James Ronayne shared photos and video of the flooded businesses from his kayak, which he launched on Compromise Street.

James Ronayne captured these flooding conditions from his kayak Tuesday evening. Editor’s Note: We do not recommend anyone going out in any watercraft or driving through flooded streets.

Wednesday morning marked the first day of the Maryland General Assembly in Annapolis, and much of the City Dock area was underwater or full of washed-up debris. The City of Annapolis reported that flooding peaked at five feet, putting it in the top five floods on record.

Edgewater, south of Annapolis, saw road closures. Further south, Drum Point Road in Deale had water coming up into yards. Further south still, whitecaps crashed over the riprap at Chesapeake Beach.

Here are more images of flooding around the region:

School districts around the mid- and upper Chesapeake Bay announced early dismissals, delays and closures Tuesday and Wednesday to keep school buses clear of the worst weather.

All Bay Bridge traffic was held for nearly four hours Tuesday evening, a policy that comes into play when sustained winds exceed 55 mph continuously for 10 minutes or more, or wind gusts persistently exceed 55 mph over a period of 15 minutes. The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) says these conditions jeopardize life or property, and require halting all movement across the bridge.

Waterfront homeowners saw tides so high they could nearly launch their boats straight from the lift. At Bohemia Bay Yacht Harbour, boats were floating even with the tops of the pilings. With the water over the finger piers, a photo showed a powerboat listing to the side, possibly resting on top of the pier.

Not far away at Tydings Park Marina in Havre de Grace, a roughly 26-foot Bayliner hardtop powerboat was mostly underwater come Wednesday morning. Josh Argentino of Argentino Marine Sales and Service said there were multiple reports of boats needing refloated.

Harford County swift water rescue crews staged ahead of the predicted flooding Tuesday morning and by Tuesday evening, they had responded to multiple stranded drivers.

Waterfront museums and organizations shut down Tuesday, from Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels to the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center just past Kent Island. Annapolis Maritime Museum staff and volunteers spent all day Tuesday moving exhibit displays and securing the building for the inevitable flooding. All three remain closed Wednesday.

Winters Run, a 14.5-mile-long stream that feeds the Bush River on the upper Bay, swelled so much that swift water and special operations teams from Harford County had to rescue three people from a vehicle stuck in floodwater on Philadelphia Road. Nearby homes and the Winters Run Inn were evacuated. In another Harford County flood, crews saved four people from a vehicle.

Chesapeake Bay Magazine is closely following the storm impacts as they develop. If you have flooding or damage reports to share, please message us on social media or email [email protected].