July 5, 2005
Storms moved through the area about 4:30 p.m. this afternoon, and now the cleanup process is in effect. While the storm only lasted about 30 minutes, the damage to the area roadways will take days to fix.
"We have a number of employees out that will be out well into the night and probably into the early morning clearing trees out of roadways primarily, [because] that is there number one task," said City spokesperson Maurice Jones.
The rain came storming through the area around 4:30 p.m., knocking down power lines, trees, and flooding roadways. A Saturn is worse for the wear after fast rising water overtook the doorways, trapping the driver at University Avenue and Emmet Street.
"It was just like a crack and you could hear it fall but I did not even notice it fell on a car at first, until I walked out here," said eyewitness Kathryn Ziegler about a nearby fallen tree.
Two workers from this Digs Company truck are lucky to be alive after the monstrous tree fell on their truck, almost trapping them inside. No one was injured in this incident.
"The gentlemen that was driving said he just kind of leaned down and the force of the limb pushed open the passenger side door, pushing the other guy out," said Digs Company Manager Gretchen Wood.
The clean up on Park Street continues from this incident. City officials hope to have all of the trees cleaned up for tomorrow's morning rush hour. They say even with the extensive damage, it could have been much worse.
"We've been fortunate, especially when you consider the intensity of the storm [and] how quickly it came in. I think we're very fortunate not to have any serious injuries," said Jones.
City officials are also saying that all of the streetlights that went dark during the storms have sense been relit.