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City of Staunton prepares ahead of another flash flood threat

The city distributed materials to make sandbags for residents and business owners to prepare...
The city distributed materials to make sandbags for residents and business owners to prepare for possible flooding.(WHSV)
Published: Aug. 12, 2020 at 4:39 PM EDT
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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) — The city of Staunton is still cleaning up from the floods that ravaged the area on Saturday. Today they were also preparing for another hit.

Across the city, people have been volunteering their time to help those businesses that were impacted the most from those floods.

Many people were out Wednesday lending a hand, working hard to get as much cleaned up as possible while still preparing for another downpour Wednesday evening.

Business owners and residents filled bags with sand with hopes of being better prepared for another potentially damaging storm.

"The storm sewer started to back up into the building, and then it just started coming down from all over the place," Chip Clarke said.

Clarke owns the Stratton building in downtown. He said the floodwaters reached nearly 5 feet in the Fabulous salon and the art studio, both a total loss.

“All sheetrock down here so all of that’s got to come out, so right now we’re taking it down to the original foundation, anything that is not structural is being removed,” Clarke said.

The city of Staunton did its part to prepare by clearing out the drainage system,

"That's going to be our best fight against the flood in order to have it flow into clear drains and the city be able to absorb it," Mayor Andrea Oakes said.

The city is encouraging residents to prepare at home as well by having essentials like non-perishable food and water.

“It'‘s not a bad idea to go ahead and contact your homeowner’s insurance, your business insurance, just to see if there is a potential for coverage,” Mayor Oakes said.

Despite the hardships that have come along with damaging storms, city councilwoman Amy Darby is confident Staunton will pull through.

"It's wonderful to see everybody work together and to help each other. That's what Staunton has really always been about. We're strong. We always have been. We always will be. We'll get through these kind of times," Darby said.

Mayor Oakes said the city is there to help in any way they can.

There will be more heavy trash pick Thursday if needed. She said the city will do another damage assessment following tonight’s storm to determine if a state of emergency needs to be called.

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