Madison County Building Extensively Damaged by Water Leak

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MADISON COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) -- 'Office closed due to flooding.' That's what the sign reads that is hanging up at the Madison County Sales Tax Department and the Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs in Downtown Huntsville.  A water leak during last week's thunderstorms turned into way more than just a leak.

Within a matter of hours, the water leak did hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of damage. "When you think about a water leak, you think how bad could it be, well this situation here they're tearing out the entire ceilings, floors, the sheet rock, so this right here could be somewhere from $500,000  to a million dollars worth of damage," said Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong.

The building stored a lot of election equipment. Strong said they've been trying to determine what can stay and what needs to go. "We had 8 inches of water on two floors."

Crews boxed and sealed up records Wednesday afternoon. WHNT News 19 is told none of the records were damaged, but a lot of machinery is gone, for good.

"We had a $150,000 scanning machine for the Probate Judge that was stored there," said Strong. "It was received two days before so we're evaluating just to be sure that this insurance claim will be handled appropriately."

The water damage means about 20 people have to relocate for work. "There's people right now we're trying to secure a location right now and we're evaluating a couple of properties downtown, they are still working but a lot of their paperwork and computers were destroyed during this process."

Strong estimates it will take months to fix the damage done to the building.

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