Alberto causes minor flooding

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 17, 2006

While damage was minimal, some people in the Roanoke-Chowan region are still dealing with the aftereffects of Tropical Storm Alberto.

&uot;I hope this isn’t the start of things to come,&uot; Hertford County Emergency Management Director Charles Jones said, relating that it was early in the hurricane season. &uot;Still, things went pretty well in Hertford County.&uot;

Jones said there were trees down in some areas of Hertford County after the remnants of Alberto passed through and that there were people in vehicles who were stranded, but there was no major damage.

He said several roads were still under water and a few washed out, but overall there was no major damage in the area.

Jones said the Ahoskie Creek would probably crest late Friday afternoon, but he didn’t expect any major consequences from the occurrence.

As of Friday afternoon, the roadways behind Stoney Creek Diner were partially closed due to water covering the road. On Friday afternoon, DOT crews were seen clearing logs floating at the Stoney Creek bridge on US 13 south of Ahoskie.

Jones indicated there was five inches of rain at the emergency management office in Winton.

While there was no major damage to roads or property, Jones said there was concern about damage to crops, which he said could be a problem.

In Northampton County, Emergency Services Director Chuck Joyner reported the same type of damage.

He said there was minor flooding and some roadways that were blocked by water, but that no major damage was reported.

Joyner estimated rainfall in Northampton County at four or five inches.

Over in Bertie County, EMS Director Rickey Freeman noted the majority of the problem areas were contained near the banks of the Cashie River.

Freeman said the Cashie was expected to crest at or near 11.3 feet yesterday. That represents 2.3 feet above flood stage.

&uot;If it remains below 12 feet, we’ll be okay,&uot; Freeman said. &uot;Anything above 12 feet is considered serious flooding.&uot;

In regards to damage from the floodwaters, Freeman said it was minimal, basically confined to outbuildings and farmland located near the river’s edge.

&uot;We had some flash flooding on Wednesday when the tropical storm passed through the area, but the majority of that water went away very quickly,&uot; Freeman said.

He did say there was some extensive damage caused by the flash flooding along the shoulders of 79 Siding Road near Roxobel.

Meanwhile, downtown Windsor dodged a major bullet. The low-lying areas at Davis Ballpark and Livermon Zoo were flooded. That high water completely closed Rascoe Street while York Street, which runs in front of the Chamber of Commerce, was impassable at the Davis Ballpark.

Randy Russell, owner of Bunn’s Barbecue, was keeping a close eye on the rising water.

&uot;When I came to work Friday morning, I drew a line at the water’s edge in our parking lot,&uot; said Russell whose business was buried under water during Hurricane Floyd in 1999 and flooded again in 2001 thanks to Tropical Storm Allison.

He continued, &uot;I went back out about three hours later and the water had inched up a bit, but it stopped advancing around lunchtime, so I think the river has crested.&uot;

According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation web site, four roads in the R-C region are still affected by the storm.

The include:

* Bull Hill Road in Bertie County is flooded near the Hoggard Mill Bridge;

* Benthall Bridge Road in Hertford County is flooded at the Potecasi Creek;

* College Road is washed out just north of U.S. 158; and

* Cullen Road is flooded and partially washed out 1.8 miles east of N.C. 45.

Messages left for the local Department of Transportation office were not returned.

(R-C News-Herald Editor Cal Bryant contributed to this story.)