Heavy rains damage yards and homes

By Andy Jenks - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Area homeowners hope all this rain doesn't create big problems where they live, but it's already too late in some spots.

Let's first look at the James River. Big water right there is almost at flood stage. The water that ends up here often comes from neighborhoods that, right now, are making sure there's no permanent damage.

Robert Hicks is the guy you call when there's a problem underground.

"The crawl space is out of sight out of mind. It's not something that people venture into unless they absolutely have to," said Hicks of Virginia Basements of Ashland.

And these days people "have to." Monday's heavy rains, piled on top of an unusually wet winter and spring, are making crawl spaces and basements a mess.

"The ground is saturated, and it won't take anymore," said Hicks.

No one knows that better than Tom Rockhold. He's lived on a low-lying property since 1985.

"We are now being inundated, as you can see, with just a tremendous amount of water," said Tom.

A "little" flooding is not unusual, but he says the water seems to get worse every year.

"You can't even enjoy your yard...until maybe August," said Tom.

Tom knows letting this problem linger means he'll risk having the water trickle into his crawl space.

"And obviously that will generate mildew and fungus and all sorts of issues like that," he said.

"Whatever's in your crawl space, you're breathing in your house. You just don't realize it," said Hicks.

So Hicks, and others in his line of work are about to be very busy, installing basement liners and underground pumps to keep all that rainwater as far away as possible.

"Usually we get the rain, and the following day the calls really start to come in," he said.

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