Washington Terrace storm floods homes; one hospitalized

Wednesday , August 06, 2014 - 12:42 PM

South Ogden flooding

Furniture and other belongings are pictured outside of a Washington Terrace apartment complex...

WASHINGTON TERRACE — Anna Maybury knew she was fighting a losing battle Tuesday as she tried to spare her basement apartment from several inches of flooding.

"I was trying to get (the water) out of my bedroom. And I came out here," said Maybury, 83, gesturing to her front doorway, "and all the while, it was coming into the front."

Maybury and her husband, James, were one of up to 10 families affected by a brief, torrential rainstorm that swept through Washington Terrace beginning about 3 p.m. James, 89, was later hospitalized at Ogden Regional Medical Center with chest pain, believed to be from anxiety over the flood. 

Anna was still waiting for word on her husband's condition Tuesday evening as family members and cleaning crews ripped out carpets and sorted through her furniture, preserving her belongings by stacking them high in her kitchen.

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"We've been flooded three times here, but this one was the worst," said Anna Maybury, who has lived in the apartment, near 4900 South and 300 West, since 2002. "The carpets were all lost, and we've got to make sure to dry the walls (to prevent mold from forming)."

The Mayburys were evacuated by the Weber County Sheriff's Office and contacted by the American Red Cross, who gave them a $275 credit card to use for repairs and was prepared to provide temporary housing. But Anna was back at her place with her children, who live nearby, sorting through the water-soaked wreckage as the threat of more rain subsided.

"We came back to see what the disaster looked like," she said, looking around. "We'll get it all fixed but it'll take time."

One inch of rain hammered the streets in about 45 minutes, said Tom Hanson, Washington Terrace city manager.

"We really got hammered quick and hard, and then it was over," said Hanson, who also works as emergency manager for the city.

An estimated 8-10 houses were damaged, Hanson said. Some only sustained isolated carpet damages and others were hit by an inch or more of standing water. No other residents were evacuated.

Some of the worst flooding occurred close to the Mayburys, Hanson said, but it wasn't confined to one neighborhood Tuesday.

"It was scattered. So many areas were inundated," he said.

Washington Terrace has been working for several years to upgrade its storm drains and gutters, according to Hanson, and the drainage system worked as well as could be expected.

"It was taking water away quickly," Hanson said. "Streets that ... were completely flooded had cleared (in as little as 10 minutes). ... No system can be completely prepared."

South Ogden hit heavily; road closed because of heavy rain

Much of South Ogden was also drenched in Tuesday’s brief storm. One block of 42nd Street, between Adams and Porter avenues, was shut down for the day beginning at 4:30 p.m.

City workers on site said the road was possibly unstable. Parts of the street’s surface could be seen cracked as crews put up “ROAD CLOSED’ signs.

”It’s been to much rain for the storm drain,“ said city worker Tim Zampedri, referring to rainfall since the weekend combined with Tuesday’s downpour. ”It will be closed tonight as we figure out what we need to do. ... We don’t want anything on it because we don’t know all that’s beneath it.“

Another South Ogden home suffered minor flood damage near 40th Street and Evelyn Drive. The garage there was also flooded and furniture was damaged. 

Contact reporter Ben Lockhart at 801-625-4221 or blockhart@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @SE_Lockhart. Like him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/blockhartSE.

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