ALBERTVILLE, Ala. – A cul-de-sac that gets cut off every time heavy rains flood its intersection is drawing ire from residents, wondering what might happen when four-foot-high streams block the way in and out.
“It’s just, in that emergency situation, what are we going to do?” said Patrick Jones, who lives two houses up the street.
“For the past two to three years, anytime it rains hard, I mean just downpour, the road will flood. It will actually back up. There’s only one way in, one way out. Our fire hydrants get covered,” Jones added.
It also concerns neighbor Natasha Walker, who mentions there are elderly residents and a pregnant friend living on the block. She’s also concerned for her disabled son, who has autism and is deaf.
“His autism is extreme,” Walker said. “And (on one occasion) we couldn’t just go anywhere, and so we ended up just driving and sitting in the car stranded until the weather calmed down.”
On Wednesday, the water subsided later into the morning.
The City of Albertville issued a statement to News 19 in response to questions about the repeating situation:
“The City is aware of the ongoing water issues in the area of Brookside Drive and Penny Lane. The Mayor spoke directly with a number of residents within that neighborhood first thing this morning, as did Albertville Fire Chief Jason Beam. We have been working with private landowners ‘downstream’ who have made significant property improvements that have helped the flow of water within this area. Rather than standing for the remainder of the day, the water drained completely within an hour and a half which is a vast improvement relative to what has been the case in this neighborhood in the past. Still, we understand the massive inconvenience this is to area residents and we hear, and have heard, their concerns. We are and will continue working to remedy the issues with water in this area.”
Jones and Walker hope the issue becomes a lasting priority for local government after the latest flooding episode.
“At this rate as much as it’s starting to flood, I think we could give Guntersville a run for their money with the boat races, and we can hold them here in Albertville,” Jones said.
“Bigger changes are going to have to happen,” Walker said.
Wednesday’s flooding did prevent some from leaving to work, Walker said, but school commutes were not an issue because Albertville City Schools is on fall break.