Craig County Slowly Repairing Flooding Damage

Tuesday, September 17th 2013, 6:23 pm
By: Craig Day

People in Craig County are still dealing with the aftermath of heavy rain and flooding last month, after some areas got 10 inches of rain in less than 24 hours.

Flooding really took a heavy toll on county roads, which will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair.

When unusually heavy rain fell in parts of Craig County in August - raising the water level 20 feet higher than normal on Cabin Creek and causing water to cross county roads in 100 places - Emergency Management Director Morris Bluejacket knew it would be costly.

Turns out the damage is even worse than expected.

"It's been quite a job so far," said Morris Bluejacket, Craig County Emergency Management.

The flooding caused more than $600,000 in damage, maybe up to $800,000 when its all said and done.

"That's a big lick for a little county like this," Bluejacket said.

It's going to take a lot of manpower and materials to repair the ruts, smooth out the surfaces, and fix damage to bridges. It's a rough ride when the roads are dry, and a wild ride when they're wet. 

8/8/2013 Related Story: Craig County Dealing With Flooding For Second Time In 6 Weeks

"Like driving in snow, slippery," said driver Kelly Zumstein. "Have to be careful not to run off the road."

The mud makes a mess on cars, and is messing up the Craig County budget. The damage doesn't qualify for any financial help from FEMA. 

"We've still got a lot of work to do, there is still a lot of damage out there, but we're trying to do it as we've got time and money," Morris Bluejacket, Emergency Management Director.

The county has already spent nearly 150-thousand dollars recovering from the heavy rain and flooding to make roads passable, but a lot of work still needs to be done. 

"It threw us way behind, but we're catching up slowly," Bluejacket said.

Until repairs can be made, drivers will just have the manage through the mud, while county leaders figure out the finances. The State Office of Emergency Management will pay some of the storm recovery costs in Craig County, but Bluejacket says it will be only about $100,000.