Blue Springs residents deal with floodwaters
by GREG KAYLOR, Banner Staff Writer
Jul 11, 2013 | 1494 views | 0 0 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A rain-weary community
THIS AREA of Linda Drive sustained heavy flooding due to runoff and heavy rain during the weekend. Contributed photos
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Saturated ground from July’s off-and-on heavy downpours could become the next component in Bradley County’s weather woes as more rain entered the area Wednesday night and could remain today, along with slightly windy conditions.

National Weather Service forecasters are predicting the continuation of scattered storms across the region in the wake of Monday’s reports by utilities and emergency operations officials that even light winds, coupled with ground saturation, could become a recipe for toppled trees.

Falling timber isn’t good news for power lines and houses, nor anything else in their path, but additional rain is even worse news for several area families who are still coping with last weekend’s flooding that left a variety of outbuildings and basements underwater.

Cleveland-Bradley County Emergency Management Agency Director Troy Spence concurred with utilities personnel on the possibility, and the impact, of falling trees.

Spence and several others with CBCEMA have been in the Blue Springs Road areas where homes received flooding due to the high rainfall over the past week.

Nearly 10 inches of rain fell across Bradley County over an eight-day period.

NWS is predicting calm winds for the most part, but even minimal winds could cause trees to uproot.

According to NWS, winds up to 10 mph can be expected as cooler temperatures move in with new rainfall.

Jamie Lewis, Disaster and Emergency Services specialist with the Hiwassee Chapter of the American Red Cross, said the agency is helping several families in the Blue Springs community whose homes or property were affected by the flooding during the weekend.

Avenell Leamon, a Blackburn Road area resident, said her outbuilding flooded. She reported several neighbors also are struggling with high water, mostly from Sunday’s deluge when 2.47 inches of rain fell in less than an hour. Leamon also said one homeowner had been in a remodeling process. The home was damaged as well as two vehicles which sustained water damage.

Spence said roadway damage in flooded areas had been noted but didn’t appear to be extensive.

A damage threshold of $360,000 must be reached in Bradley County before federal disaster help can be obtained, according to Spence. Declarations by the governor are also needed.

“We doubt there is more than $30,000 in assessed damages with water actually getting into the one home we have inspected. It did breach several outbuildings and basements but not into actual living spaces,” Spence said.

“Our offices have not received any damage notifications. We learned of these and did inspections and assessments on our own,” Spence added.

Anyone with damage due to flooding is urged to contact CBCEMA at 728-7289.

“It appears so far that everyone has been taking care of their damage on their own,” Spence explained.