City’s flood damages surpass $150K

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Much of the area received more than a foot of rain during Feburary’s flooding.

Red Bay | Monday morning, after Red Bay Parks and Recreation Director Dean Hubbard left for Belgreen to carry documentation on the city’s flood damage to a collection meeting, more damage surfaced in the city.

A sinkhole was found along 9th Street SE just below Red Bay High School’s softball field. The extent of the sinkhole was not known Monday, but it will simply add to the approximately $150,000 worth of damages the city has compiled in the wake of major flooding from rains received during the third week of February.

While much of the city’s documented damage was from streets, potholes and culverts, the city’s Dixie Youth baseball fields took much of the brunt.

“The fields are in bad shape,” Hubbard said during Monday night’s City Council meeting. “The flooding basically washed the tops off all the fields.”

Much of the area received more than a foot of rainfall between February 18 and Feb. 23, with more than 10 inches of that falling over a two-day period. The resulting flooding raised the level of Bear Creek to the point some portions of the fencing at the ball fields showing a water line that reached three feet in some places. Flooding almost reached the concession stand, but that building was spared. Another building wasn’t.

“All the cities in the county are going together with the county to declare an emergency,” Mayor Charlene Fancher said as the Council issued a flood declaration. “We have lots of photos and documentation. The Dixie Youth park took a beating because it was submerged under water. We had a small bathroom under water.”

An initial estimate of countywide damages was not available by press time Tuesday.

Hubbard and City Clerk Linda Holcomb compiled list damages and totals for the report to be shared with Franklin County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Mary Glass. It’s not a final report, though; any new damage found can still be added to the total.

“We can submit more; just had to get figures in,” Fancher said.

Anyone inside city limits who finds damage they believe was caused by the flooding is urged to contact City Hall as soon as possible at 256-356-4473. County residents not inside city limits should contact the EMA at 256-332-8890.