Salem recovery begins after devastating flood - News, Weather & Sports

Salem recovery begins after devastating flood

Salem flooding damage (Source: Jobina Fortson/ WAVE 3 News) Salem flooding damage (Source: Jobina Fortson/ WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - You could hear the pieces slowing being put back together in Salem early Saturday morning.

Within three hours, water rose from about four feet to 18 feet on the Blue River in Salem on Friday night.

“It was just unreal,” Bailey Sidwell said. “I just didn't see it coming.”

Cars that could be seen floating Friday night were waiting to be towed on Saturday. A newly-renovated softball field at Salem Middle School is barely holding on.

Several businesses on Water Street were ruined.

>> IMAGES: Sever storms, flooding hit WAVE Country

“The first indication we got, our cell phones went off with flash flood warnings,” Roger Nelson, a business owner on Water Street said. “Probably three minutes later, my son-in-law called and said, ‘We need to move the vehicles out of your shop.' By the time we got here, the water increased to where we could not get to the building.”

Nelson owns an asphalt seal coating company. Every vehicle in his shop was submerged.

“From the floor to the color is six-foot-seven,” Roger said, referring to the water line on the wall.

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Down the road from Nelson’s shop, about eight feet of water filled Hughes Tire Service.

“I didn't know it was this bad,” Bob Huff said. “My brother called me and said we better get down there and by the time I come it was already, it was too late then.”

This was the second-time Bob Huff's shop has flooded. He was hoping 2004 would be the last.

“It's kind of disheartening," Huff said. "But I appreciate all the help, everybody, volunteers coming in and everything."

WATCH: Jobina Fortson's report here

Giving up isn't an option for the people of Salem.

“Life does go on,” Nelson said. 

School officials have canceled classes for Monday at Salem Middle School. An emergency meeting is scheduled for Sunday to assess the damage at the school and determine how to move forward, according to WSLM.

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