Rain falls in Brooksville, Hernando residents worry of more damage- Eric Glasser
Brooksville, FL -- Hernando County officials were going door-to-door Friday, trying to assess the damage so far, and whether the region may ultimately qualify for federal disaster status.
Marilynn Smith, like many here, says she's never seen anything like it. So much rain in such a short period of time. She watched flood waters lap against the front door of her apartment.
Seven inches fell in less than two hours.
"It was like the Mississippi river," she said.
The water was so high, sheds were floating down Broad Street in Brooksville.
Entire neighborhoods, like Campers Holiday, a 55+ mobile home park, was submerged to the point where rowing replaced driving.
Tom Livecchi's home is now waterfront property. He was striding throguh knee-high water to reach higher ground.
"You know, the house, that's immaterial," he said. "I got a wife and a dog and as long as everybody's safe all the material things, they don't matter."
Brooksville's Fire Chief Tim Mossgrove says several retail buildings were flooded when drainage systems were simply overwhelmed near Broad Street and Highway 41.
Debris was still clinging to an eight-foot fence knocked over by a wall of water that Mossgrove himself witnessed. It turned a parking lot where he was parked into a river in minutes.
"It was very hard for me to comprehend at the time. All I kept saying was that this was more significant than anything I'd ever seen including Debby," said Chief Mossgrove.
At the city's fire department, Hernando County inmates filled sandbags for several hours.
It was a service for which Sandy and Luby Best were grateful. They had two inches of water in their utility room yesterday and were expecting it to get worse by the weekend.
"We've never had to use the service before -- so for us this is the worst it's been in the 45 years we've been out there," said Sandy.
And that's what has people here most nervous. Because it's not over yet. There are more storms in the forecast.
10 News meteorologist Mark Collins says more flooding is a real possibility for the next several days.
"Flash flooding. You know, the ground is so saturated that any rain that falls isn't going to soak into the ground, it's going to go sideways. And that's gonna cause big problems," said Collins.
The Red Cross had set-up a shelter at the First United Methodist Church on Broad Street in Brooksville. On Thursday, five people stayed there, they say.
Sandbags are available at the Brooksville Fire Department at 85 Veterans Avenue for those who may need them. The maximum limit is 50 bags per family.
Hernando County is asking residents with damage to contact the Emergency Operations Center so they can add it to their overall assessment at (352) 754-4083.
The sheriff's office also released an update on road closures in the area. As of Friday evening at 8 p.m., they are as follows:
- Clinton & Providence
- Culbreath and Race Horse Ln
- Culbreath north of Hayman
- Culbreath south of Powell
- Endsley & 2397 Saturn
- Endsley & Saturn
- Ft Dade 18379
- Lakeside MHP
- Norton & Morningside on Ft Dade
- Rackley - Dirt road portion
- Rackley Rd - 2337
- Rackley Rd - 3112 close to Endsley
- Rackley to Saturn (2740)
- Young Rd