McMinn County hit hard by Wednesday's storms

McMinn County hit hard by Wednesday's storms

Posted:
Downtown Athens experienced heavy flooding. Downtown Athens experienced heavy flooding.
Crews were out Thursday cleaning up the damaged trees. Crews were out Thursday cleaning up the damaged trees.
"The rain was just terrible, unmerciful rain," said resident Sarah Mizer. "The rain was just terrible, unmerciful rain," said resident Sarah Mizer.

By JOSH AULT
6 News Reporter

ATHENS (WATE) - Several buildings, including the courthouse, were flooded and several trees knocked down when storms rolled through McMinn County on Wednesday.

One of the hardest hit areas was downtown Athens.

"All the rain was passing off the gutters," said McMinn County Mayor John Gentry. "The drain couldn't handle it."

Mayor Gentry said when the drain got clogged, it started to flood the first floor of the courthouse around 3 p.m.

"I think the deepest point was three to four inches," said Mayor Gentry. "Then, obviously, as it went back farther into the courthouse, it was shallower."

Several fans had to be brought in to dry the carpet in the chancery courtroom. The mayor says they were able to clean up the flood waters quickly.

"The office holders all pitched in, maintenance staff," said Mayor Gentry. "We actually got a crew from the McMinn County Sheriff's Office. They brought five inmates over."

The basement of Athens Federal Community Bank also flooded.

Along with all the flooding in downtown Athens, there were also trees that were knocked down by the high winds. Crews were out Thursday removing one tree from College Street.

Sarah Mizer, who lives on Madison Avenue, had one of her 100-year-old trees knocked down in the storm.

"The rain was just terrible, unmerciful rain," said Mizer. "Then all of a sudden the wind started lifting the limbs on the trees. It got real quiet, and that's when I got to the middle of the house."

Mizer says the tree hit their house, so they will have to get their roof checked for damage.

Flooding was also a problem behind Ingles. A viewer sent us a photo of the high water behind the store. One person's car was undriveable after the floodwater subsided.
    
Many people in Athens said this was one of the worst storms they have ever seen.         

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