After a week of frigid weather, a massive rain system rolled over the county recently, with flash flooding severely damaging several county roads.
For instance, a pipe on Hickory Hills Road was washed away and hasn’t been found.
“The pipe is totally gone,” said county commission chairman Anthony Dove. “Anybody who has seen a pipe, let us know.”
That pipe was replaced Sunday morning. And Madison County road crews worked long hours Saturday and Sunday, trying to repair numerous county roads. As of press time, three roads remain closed: Noble Road, Whitsel Road and Osley Mill Road. Roads that were temporarily closed included but reopened included: CO Draper Road, River Road and Roy Woods Road.
A number of other roads have repairs that must still be made, including Chandler Farm, Charles Hart, Barwick Hill, Garnett Ward, Eugene Hardman, East Paoli and Brickyard roads. There was also significant flooding in the Virginia Lane-Bedford Drive area behind Ingles in Hull.
The official rain total in Madison County for Friday and Saturday was 3.07 inches, according to Madison County cooperative weather observer Mark Jenkins.
“A reliable report from just northeast of Colbert came in at 4.67” for the same period, with 3.00” reported from the northern part of the county,” said Jenkins. “A big problem was that the rain fell on ground that had just thawed out from the early week deep freeze and was still holding most of the moisture from earlier rains. Needless to say, a couple of dry weeks would be nice right now, but not very likely given the time of year and an active pattern.”
Dove said the flooding was the worst he’s seen since he took office in 2008. He noted the saturated ground as the reason for such high water levels.
“We were expecting rain, but we didn’t expect that much in that short a period of time,” he said. “The ground was just totally saturated. Nothing was sinking in. It was all runoff….We’ve seen big rains in this county, but this was probably as bad as I’ve seen it. It was all over the county.”
Dove said he worked with the road crew on Saturday and Sunday to help repair roads. County road employees working over the weekend included director Alan Lapczynski, Ken Martin, Travis Sims, Tony Mattox, Robbie Anglin and Derrick Horne. Dove noted that commissioner Mike Youngblood worked to clean out ditches and that commissioner John Pethel came out Saturday to inspect damage on Hickory Hill Road.
“I appreciate the help of the volunteer fire departments checking the pipes and the roads and all the deputies who were out there alerting us of the problems,” said Dove. “The 9-1-1 office did a good job taking the reports and getting us the information we needed.”
Dove said he hopes the county won’t have more bad weather and more road troubles in the near future.
“It’s a constant battle,” said Dove of dealing with weather problems. “You can’t defeat mother nature.”