Bullitt County emergency crews continue clearing roads a day after dangerous flooding
BULLITT COUNTY, Ky. (WAVE) - A day after torrential rain sparked flash flooding across the area, Bullitt County road crews spent Friday morning clearing debris off the roads.
“Well, [that much rain] puts us everybody in clean-up mode is what it does,” Bullitt County Road Director Robert Watkins said. “I mean, we start the cleanup while the water’s still coming up.”
Watkins’ team started working Thursday, when roughly four inches of rain fell south of the Salt River in about three hours’ time.
Watkins said he woke up at 4 a.m. Thursday, organizing resources and manpower for the job, often working in real time to clear debris and water from roads and ditches.
“We had a lot of compliments on it,” Watkins said. “The guys, they’ve been doing this awhile. I thought they’ve done a real good job.”
Friday, Watkins and his crew went back to the hardest-hit areas, to clean them off once again.
Those areas included parts of Beech Grove, Preston Highway, Chapeze Lane and Lickskillet Road.
They worked with residents there to assess the situation and help them return to normalcy.
“It’s just normal out here,” Beech Grove resident Keith Helton said. “When you get that kind of rain, you can expect things to wash and it’s just the average, the way it is when you live out rurally, in a rural area.”
As the water receded, people living in the Clermont area, like Victoria Geary, finally had an avenue to get back into their homes.
Twenty-four hours prior, the water was close to getting inside.
“They have built three barrel houses up on this hill over here, which the concrete, it displaces water,” Geary said. “So, then you’ve got all that water, that would normally get soaked in the ground, saturated into the ground, it’s now not getting saturated into the ground. It’s now just trying to find anywhere it can go.”
Bullitt County Judge Executive Jerry Summers told WAVE News the county has not received that much rain in that short a period of time since 1997, when there was major flooding countywide.
He said it required the Bullitt County Road Department to have all hands on deck for a prolonged period of time.
“What we do, we try to make sure that the general public is safe,” Summers said. “We used every, what I’m going to say [is], barrier that we had to close the roads. We had all of our equipment out. We had our emergency management out, and believe it or not, our drone flies in the rain like that as well.”
Summers said the county’s emergency management team plans to assess its response to the event, and use the data to help them plan for future rain and flood events.
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