New Haven cleaning up after Rolling Fork floods parts of town

Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 10:09 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
Video from the air shows the Rolling Fork flooding parts of Main Street in New Haven.
Video from the air shows the Rolling Fork flooding parts of Main Street in New Haven.(Courtesy: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Parts of Nelson County are still trying to recover after the Rolling Fork left parts of the county flooded this week.

Main Street businesses spent a majority of Thursday cleaning up a mess that is now days old. At Head Automotive, the hoses and squeegees worked overtime as Mark Head and his team tried to push the remaining floodwater out of the shop.

“It’s just a muddy mess that’s more aggravating than anything,” Head said, “but you’ve kind of got to get it like a bath tub. You got to get it where it goes down and wash it on out.”

While they wring the place dry, Head’s tools are balancing on pallet jacks and sitting in trailers outside the shop, so they remain dry.

Despite the disruption to business, Head is still trying to remain positive.

“This is 2010 — 52 inches deep,” Head said as he pointed to a mark on the wall. “Then here’s 2021 — 20 inches deep.”

Down Main Street, Greg Mathews and others spent Thursday gutting out the Kentucky Railway Museum.

Thanks to the Rolling Fork, pieces of history have been waterlogged and Mathews was forced to throw some of them in the dumpster.

“My guess is [we lost] several thousand dollars,” Mathews, the museum’s executive director, said.

On Thursday, most of Main Street looked that way.

The Rolling Fork crested at 28.5 feet Tuesday, reaching places in town it had not in several years. The river has receded since but has still left businesses looking more like yard sales and smelling like locker rooms.

“These floods are pretty difficult, because this is river water and it’s very silty because this is an agricultural area,” Mathews said. “So, you’ve got to start hitting what’s left after the water starts receding pretty quick before this stuff starts to set up.”

Mathews told WAVE 3 News it may take months before the museum is fully restored.

As for Head, he’s hoping to be back in business on Monday, with his patience for water wearing thin.

“[I] might have one more flood in me and I might have to retire,” Head said.

Mathews said the museum will likely need to rely on donations to restore some of the material. If you’d like to help, click here.

Copyright 2021 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.