LOWELL -- On Berkeley Avenue in Lowell, Ed Brian ran his sump pump for around seven hours, until 3 a.m. today, clearing out the water from yesterday's floods.

Standing in his flooded backyard in Billerica, Dennis Baker laughed as he said a seven-hour span of pumping would be a nice break.

"I have two pumps that run 24 hours a day, 365 days a year," Baker said. "Everything I keep down cellar, I have to put up high, so it doesn't get ruined."

Baker lives on Gray Street, his house and a neighbor's directly between Content Brook and a patch of marshland.

"And all this runs into my cellar," he said, gesturing to the bodies of water around him.

Two ducks swam Tuesday afternoon in the floodwater behind Baker's house, a pondlike puddle that had receded a couple feet from Monday's high-water mark but still swallowed up most of the yards and seeped into the neighbor's shed.

Multiple inches of rain, combined with melting snow, closed sections of roads and flooded some neighborhoods across Greater Lowell yesterday, leaving residents cleaning up today.

On Berwick Street in Lowell's Belvidere section, a woman donned plastic gloves to sweep the leaves out of her driveway and garage. Nearby marshlands had flooded so severely that Lowell firefighters visited Wentworth Avenue houses, around the corner, in rescue boats Monday.


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It was the first time in decades the water had come up that high, said Donna Vergados, who owns the Berkeley Avenue house Brian had spent hours pumping out overnight.

"Forty-four years I've owned this house, we never had a drop of water," Vergados said. "I've never seen it like that in all these years."

Brian said about six inches of water got into his basement, and he was spending Tuesday morning cleaning up.

"What are you going to do?" he said. "We get the pump out, we get the fans out."

The Whipple Road/Brown Street bridge over the Shawsheen River at the Wilmington/Billerica line was still closed Tuesday afternoon. Officials had shut the roadway Monday when the river, almost a quarter foot above flood levels, was rushing across the road. The water was still high Tuesday but was no longer blocking the road.

For more on this story, see Wednesday's Sun or visit http://www.lowellsun.com.