Preliminary flood damage tally mounts as recovery begins

Preliminary estimates on flood damage to county roads and bridges were received yesterday, with three districts reporting by the newspaper’s afternoon deadline and one district’s figures expected soon.

Officials emphasized these figures were preliminary and will possibly be revised upward as estimates are refined and further damages are discovered and evaluated in the days ahead. That is especially true of damage to bridges and culverts, which took a beating county-wide.

Blount County Emergency Management Agency director Don Roybal said the threshold amount of $204,000 needed to support the state of emergency declaration has already been exceeded, with one district’s damage figures still to be added to the total.

Below are the preliminary damages reported by district.

District 1 (to come)
District 2 $180,000
District 3 62,000
District 4 15,000
Total $257,000

The final total should be well above $300,000, according to county engineer Winston Sitton.

Initial indications are that no major bridge spans across the Locust Fork or Mulberry Fork rivers suffered significant damage. Three of the five bridges closed as a result of flooding remain closed until further notice: Dalton Walker Road bridge (Blountsville), Warrior Creek Road bridge (Strawberry), and Gaines Road bridge (Wynnville). Two of the bridges initially closed have been reopened to traffic: Faulkner Road bridge (Easley) and Deans Ferry Road bridge (County Line).