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Thread: More devastation in Richmond VA

  1. #1
    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    I don't know who may have seen it on the National news, but last Monday afternoon/nite Richmond was hit hard with severe flash flooding from the remnants of Hurricane Gaston. Gaston was just a tropical depression when it reached here and weather reports only called for about 3-5" inches of rain. Sounded like a lot at the time but no one was prepared for what actually fell.

    Gaston inexplicably got "stuck" rotating and rotating just over metro Richmond and poured 10-14" of rain down on the city and surrounding areas in just a few hours. The results were devasting. No one expected it and no one was prepared! There was flooding like no one has EVER seen here before. The flooding was EVERYWHERE...not just low-lying areas near the James River as can happen sometimes. Almost everyone was hit in some way. There have been at least 5 deaths...one was a 19 year old young man who was swept away in a car with his mother and sister. They got out and he made sure they got to some trees to cling to before he was swept away; they were thankfully saved. There are countless stories of heroism and lifesaving all over the city as people did what they could to help those caught in the boiling waters. I can't even begin to tell you how many homes, cars, buildings, roads and businesses that have been destroyed.

    As I left work for home Monday nite, I had NO idea what was happening or what lay ahead. What is normally a 10-15 minute drive took me 2 1/2 hrs. Every street everywhere was logjammed with traffic as people were routed off of blocked streets, highways and interstates that were flooded. I saw sights I've NEVER seen before! It was truly unbelievable. It was sad. I could only sit in the "parking lot" and listen to the radio reports which by that time, now realizing the serious of the situation, were coming in and they made continuing reports of rain levels...9 inches...10.5"...11.25".... My area got 12".

    I was lucky...I made it home finally...soggy and stunned. I did discover my basement flooded (12-14" of water at least) and I live nowhere near water nor am I in a low area. We were down at work (computerless) for 2 1/2 days only recovering yesterday afternoon.

    For anyone interested, here is a slide show that shows just a fraction of the damage here. It is so widespread and so bad...I don't know how some things will ever be fixed.

    http://tdcar.timesdispatch.com/Storm0831/storm0831.html

    The past year has been VERY atypical for natural disasters here. Last September the city was severely damaged by hurricane Isabelle. 10,000 trees were felled in the city alone and I had no power for 13 days. Then there was a minor earthquake. Followed by a massive fire in the downtown area that destroyed 17 blocks of homes and businesses. And now this--massive flashflooding citywide.

    Normally Richmond is a quiet, easy city free of large disasters of this kind. Its really very bizarre...

    I hope you all will send a kind thought towards those in this city who have suffered human losses and personal tragedies--they number in the thousands. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_h_32.gif[/img] It will be a long recovery.

    Soggy Suzanne



    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

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    Ee gad! Suzanne, I'm glad you're safe. I really hope you guys are spared Frances!
    17 Nash Rd.
    North Salem, NY 10560

    YOU! Outta my gene pool!

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    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    Yeah...that's a BIG concern here. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/confused.gif[/img] But I think it will go westerly and not northeast. But with those things, ya never know.
    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

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    Whats it to ya? Finch's Avatar
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    it is truly unfortunate. However, living in huricane ally everyone must have known that things like this would happen from time to time. Its one of the dangers of livimg in the southeast.

    Unfortunatly its not enough to stem the giant tide of people moving to florida... theres not gonne be any wild places left there soon

    oh, well...
    that makes no logic

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    So sorry to hear that PAK. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_h_32.gif[/img] The things we take for granted by seeing on the tv and think that will never happen to us. I am firstly thankfull that you are ok. Cleaning water out of the basement is not fun as I have had to do that when living with my mom. Hope for a speedy recovery and sorry to hear about this!

    BTW do you have flood insurance? [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/confused.gif[/img] That would help with expenses and repairs.
    \"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.\"
    -- Oscar Wilde

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    Frakkin Toaster Cynic81's Avatar
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    OMG I have Cursed the city! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_m_32.gif[/img]

    Seriously, all this has happened in the year since I came to Richmond. Luckily VCU made it out with very little damage, though power went out on the MCV campus (Which we on the Monroe Park campus enjoyed hearing since they had power and we didn't during Isabel). thankfully my apartment on Marshall St. only had a few leaks a light water damage inside, but the VCU Bookstore, built under a 4 story parking garage, got a lot of water damage thanks to a leaky roof and windows. Especially the windows, since there was so much water coming in flowing down the side of the building. There was actually a car stuck in waist deep water in the alley behind the bookstore, which I worked at the night of the storm. I manged to get home following a harrowing run down W. Broad and crossing stagnant traffic on Belvidere. But it was amazing seeing all the streets flooded. There were areas where the sidewalks were completely underwater.

    The worst part is that nost of historic Shockoe Bottom, once a painfully cool collection of homes and shops built out of old historic buildings, is now mostly gone. A lot of areas have been condemned, though thankfully many are pledging to rebuild what has been lost. Although (Suzanne and other Richmonders may appreciate this) it looks like we're gonna get that stadium in the Bottom after all :/.
    The Best Part About Being a Sociopath is Never Having to Say You're Sorry.

  7. #7
    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    Actually we don't live in "hurricane alley"...Richmond is in central VA and rarely gets any effects from hurricanes other than dreary rainy weather and maybe some strong breezes. The east coast of VA can get hit hard by hurricanes though. The damage here was caused by flash flooding which can happen anywhere in the U.S. if large amounts of rain fall in a short period of time. Streets and ground can't drain it fast enough. Meteorologists are going to be meticulously studying this as they cannot explain what held Gaston in such a stationery position for so long. Usually storms move in and then away.

    I don't know of anyone who supports moving the stadium down to the Bottom...I saw someone on TV overlooking the devastation and saying "And they want to move the baseball stadium here?" I wish they'd put it up to a referendum--it would lose. They'll just tear down what remains of the historic buildings to build it. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_h_32.gif[/img] Stupid idea. Who wants to take their kids down to Shockoe Bottom for a game? Currently The Diamond is only a few blocks from my house.

    And nope...no flood insurance. I don't live where its needed. The only people that have that are folks that live near bodies of water that do flood. This was such a freak thing that nobody was prepared for what happened. It will go down in the history books. Thankfully I don't think I will have any serious damage although I have yet to paw through the soggy stuff down there. I do have some very very precious OLD Christmas ornaments that I hope are OK. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/confused.gif[/img]

    BTW Mike...I believe YOU have something to do with all this. Never had things like this happen until you moved here. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_m_32.gif[/img]



    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

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    Hey Mike - weren't you also the person that had to deal with a big fire nearby? Or was that Suzanne?
    A flytrap ate my homework!
    -Michelle

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