The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
-Psalm 19:1

Do you know that God controls the clouds and makes his lightning flash?
-Job 37:15

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Flood recovery in Valdosta

Well, several things to talk about today... First, the National Weather Service in Tallahassee has offered their assessment of the storm on April 13 that has supposedly dropped tornadoes within their county warn area (CWA). They have determined all the damage to be caused by straight line winds.One of my co-workers mentioned that he was told that his whole town back home was destroyed... Cobb, Georgia... Don't know what that's all about.

I went into my dear in-laws' tragic flood damaged Valdosta Meadowbrook neighborhood yesterday evening to drop off something, pick up some things and check in on them. They were walking out the door to check out some of the area. My sweet mother-in-law walked with me over to the home across the street from hers, which was a rental. The neighbors are concerned about the health risk, as no one has entered the structure to remove the damaged and water filled furniture... no one has torn down sheet rock or ripped up carpeted floors... the smell was horrendous, and the renters have just abandoned the structure. I shared one of Haley's pictures of the house yesterday.You know, the one where the water line was mere inches from the roof line. Standing beside the house was humbling... standing on their top stair, the water line was over my head. It's a shocking thought that those homes had water rise that high around their homes. Additionally and sadly, I heard that with Monday's rain and some further uncertainties, the local officials warned people in that neighborhood, now working hard on recovery efforts, that water levels were expected to rise once again...

National Weather Service
Southeast River Forecast Center
Hydrologic Vulnerability Assessment – Suwannee River Update
11:45 PM Monday April 13, 2009

Major Flooding - Extensive inundation of structures and roads. Significant evacuations of people and/or transfer of property to higher elevations.
Tallahassee's Report of Severe Weather and Flooding of Late March and Early April 2009. I can't imagine dealing with losing everything in my home... losing my home... and being told while trying to pick through the wreckage that it might happen again. I can't imagine how overwhelmed these people must feel. The piles of debris lining the roads was unbelievable, and according to my mother-in-law, it was worse over the weekend with piles of furniture, large appliances, carpeting, and basically... everything filling the sides of the road, leading a lonely strip of road available for local traffic and relief vehicles which were present in abundance while I was there. It looked like the local power company was establishing emergency power to the homes while I was there... going house to house... that tree in the neighbor's yard, the one that was leaning heavily for years was removed by the Baptist Relief organization, who had a fleet of volunteers there working in the neighborhood. My sweet mother-in-law commented that it was shocking to look at the neighbor's house and see through to the other side, where only framing still stands. The smell in the Meadowbrook neighborhood was nauseating, but MUCH better than it was from what I understand. The mosquitoes are horrible! I was bit 8 times in the fewer than 10 minutes that I was out there. I hope the city is spraying the area since we have had West Nile virus present in our mosquito population. I have checked into getting the area sprayed (in case no one else has mentioned it up the line.) Local residents and relief workers have all received Tetanus shots free of charge. One home built on a slab was actually moved off its foundation. Unfortunately, the next issue to strike will be a significant mold crisis. Homes have had furniture, carpeting, flooring, ducts, walls, tiles ripped out, but mold will still grow at hazardous levels in those homes, becoming a health risk to people living in the neighborhood and especially to those planning to somehow move back into these structures. Even folks who didn't have water in their homes should look into having their crawl spaces checked for structural integrity from water and mold damage. I think I will just share the pics now...
I know I promised phase 2 of the honeymoon in this post, but I just can't... I'll get to that tomorrow.

God bless all of those impacted.
The LORD bless you, and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine on you,
And be gracious to you;
The LORD lift up His countenance on you,
And give you peace.
~Numbers 6:24-26
Update: I was just contacted by a City of Valdosta employee. Regarding the mosquito spraying, they have decided not to spray for mosquiotes at this time, because this is not the "season" for the bad stuff, such as West Nile. They have been dropping mosquito larvae treatment tablet into the flood waters and puddles though to prevent development. Apparently, they missed a few...



  1. horrendous. is alden avenue flooded? :)

  2. No, ma'am, only areas near creeks and rivers. Your house is safe. :D

  3. This really is quite shocking. We rarely get anything like this here. Let's face it the UK can't cope with a few heavy rainy days nevermind a flood. So very sad.

  4. Incredibly sad. It's still very hard driving through the neighborhood. Yesterday, the neighbor across the street pulled all of their neatly groomed shrubs because all the water drowned their roots. It struck me as sadly symbolic.


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