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Row, row, row your boat

Well, Irene was certain much ado about nothing. Around here, anyway. I'm sure other areas had bigger issues but if I didn't know ahead of time, I would never have thought a hurricane had passed by. It just seemed like a moderately strong rain storm and now the sun is out and it's just another day. There isn't so much as bit of standing water out on the street as everything was carted away by the sewer system with no muss or fuss. I was all ready to just chalk it up as a done deal when I got some pictures from my sister.

It turns out that Milburn is in an area prone to flooding thanks to the river nearby. My sister's house had flooded a few years ago and it looks like it's deja vu all over again. On the plus side, her house is actually higher up then all of her neighbors. Here are some of the pictures she sent.

This is the view out her front door from a couple hours ago. That's Jeff out there surveying the new river they have running past the property. As you can see, the property is on an upslope which no doubt helps a lot given just how much water overflowed the banks.

The rising water is actually putting one of the cars at risk. Even though the rain has pretty much stopped, the water is continuing to rise and probably will continue to do so for a while yet as all the rainfall in other areas pool down. They moved it about as high up the driveway as it can go but there's still a chance the water will get high enough to at least partially flood the interior. You can also see the only neighbor of theirs who also has some elevation to their property. I'm told that every single other house around them has so much water around them that if they opened their front doors, a wave would wash inside.

Here's another shot of the flooding. Connie took this to give my mom an idea of just how much water there is, which is pretty much useless for me since I don't remember how high the flowerbed was to begin with. I'm guessing at least a couple feet though.

The worst part is that her basement is completely flooded up to a foot. I thought it was just seepage from the crazy amounts of water but it turns out that there's actually very little general seepage. Instead, the entire sewer system backs up during floods, meaning that sewage is gushing out of the toilet and shower down there. Yeck. It has already destroyed a fridge, the wood floors, and a bunch of toys/books/and other odds and ends. If you think about it though, her house might have had the least damage out of any in the neighborhood given its relative height. All the others probably have first floor damage to boot. It's going to cost some unlucky insurance company millions, if not billions to fix this crap. The one thing you can bet on is insurance premiums will go up.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 28th, 2011 06:10 pm (UTC)
After living in Florida for so many years I'm actually a little paranoid about where I live. This ground floor apartment is the first time in about 30 years where I haven't either 1) picked a 2nd floor apartment or 2) made sure that my place was one of the highest in the area. I checked my townhome when I bought it to make sure that the retention pond would flood out the south side while I was to the northeast of it. Congrats to your sister on a good location.

I don't think I've ever lived someplace with a basement. I probably wouldn't know what to do with one. I lived on a ground floor back in 1990, but I was in Virginia and it didn't flood there. BUT someone upstairs plugged the sewer line and sewage backed up in my tub. EWWWWW! That reinforced my dislike of floor level apartments.
Aug. 29th, 2011 03:05 am (UTC)
I never thought of flooding as a major problem on my list of natural disasters to not get screwed over by until I read some articles on just how pervasive the damage is and how much it ruins. It totals a house just as surely as if an earthquake or twister knocked it over, but often affects more homes in an area but is just more insidious.
Aug. 28th, 2011 08:13 pm (UTC)
I hope things work out ok for Connie.
Aug. 29th, 2011 03:04 am (UTC)
You never have to worry about Connie. She's one of the more competent people I have ever met in my life. She always ends up on her feet no matter what happens. It'll be a bit of a pain in the ass, but I'm sure she'll sort it out int he end.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


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