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Madrid suffers from flooding

Sandbags hold back mud mixed with coal dust on Fire House Lane in Madrid, where flooding hit Sunday afternoon. (Dean Hanson/Journal)
Sandbags hold back mud mixed with coal dust on Fire House Lane in Madrid, where flooding hit Sunday afternoon. (Dean Hanson/Journal)
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Houses and businesses in Madrid – including portions of the historic Mineshaft Tavern and Museum – were hit with floodwater and invaded by mud after a downpour hit the colorful town on N.M. 14 south of Santa Fe on Sunday afternoon.

Coal left over from old mining operations also ended up inside some structures, said Martin Vigil, Santa Fe County’s emergency manager.

Also, the same storm turned several rural roads near the village of Cerrillos, north of Madrid, into rivers of mud. The National Guard was called in to help extract vehicles stuck in the muck.

The storm hit around 5:30 p.m., and the water rose quickly, people in Madrid said.

“We got most of it – I think we’re flooded the worst,” said Tresa Campbell, wholesale manager at Jezebel Soda Fountain and Deli on Madrid’s main drag along N.M. 14.

She said much of the floor was covered with about four inches of mud, and a downstairs glass-making area still had two inches of water on top of the mud Monday afternoon. The store will be closed until Thursday as the staff tries to clean up and dry out.

An employee at The Hollar Restaurant said the roof of the eatery was damaged. Another business owner said Cave Road was washed out.

Vigil said that in all about 10 businesses in Madrid were flooded, along with homes in the area.

The Mineshaft had water, mud and coal or coal dust inside, with the coal coming from the tailings still around from the town’s old coal mine, Vigil said.

The downpour that caused the flooding hit as Sunday’s blues festival at the Mineshaft was breaking up, and hundreds of people had to get out of town amid the heavy rain and rising waters, he added.

Farther north along N.M. 14 south of Santa Fe, four people were trapped in a truck Sunday night along General Goodwin Road as the water rose to window level. Vigil said the people in the truck called 911, and a dispatcher stayed in contact as the group waited for the water to recede.

They eventually got out of the truck and walked and swam away. Vigil said they were sheltered for the night at a rancher’s house, then walked out of the area through the mud on Monday.

“I’m just happy we’re all here and that we had each other,” Hilary Schacht, who was inside the truck, told KOAT.

A horse sanctuary accessed by General Goodwin – a major rural connector linking N.M. 14 near Cerrillos to U.S. 285 to the east – remained unreachable Monday. The owner of the sanctuary has communicated that she is all right and has plenty of feed for the animals, Vigil said.

“People who live out that way are pretty resilient,” he added.

Vigil said the National Guard brought in military vehicles to help pull other vehicles out of the muck of several roads. It took two Guard vehicles to extract a road grader.

Other roads off N.M. 14 that turned into mud and water flows Sunday night included Gold Mine Road and Rogersville Road, near Cerrillos.

County Road 42 – which connects General Goodwin with N.M. 14 – was the only road still closed late Monday, Vigil said.

He said that the La Puebla area in northern Santa Fe County also experienced some heavy flooding, resulting in the temporary closure of N.M. 76.

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