Weather

Sanford businesses working to rebuild after Friday storms

Posted September 3

— When severe storms ripped through the area on Friday, Sanford became one of the hardest-hit areas after at least two microbursts touched down and left a trail of destruction behind.

Opened in May, Harrington’s Marketplace is Roy and Rhonda Harrtington’s dream. The store is something they discussed for a while, but in just a few short minutes, parts of what they worked so hard to build came crumbling down.

Surveillance video shows what happened to one of their buildings as Friday’s storms ripped through.

“The damage to his roof structure is just a massive amount of steel damage and siding is blown off the down, down the sides of the building. There’s not any opening that’s not affected,” said Kenneth Cronch, owner of Industrial Construction Experts.

Cronch is the contractor working to fix up the Harrington’s Marketplace warehouses. Some parts were left completely untouched while others were destroyed.

“We see steel columns that are actually cut, from the wind shear,” he said.

Roy Harrington, his young son and several vendors and employees were inside when the storm pummeled the building, but everyone made it out safely.

Normally on a weekend, the parking lot is packed with customers, but there was not a single person in sight Sunday afternoon.

Friday storms destroy Sanford business

As the Harrington’s work to rebuild, more than 100 flea market vendors who count on the space for their livelihood are left wondering what to do next.

“Not only is their family affected, but how do they affect the families that can’t be here today and that’s their main primary business,” Cronch said.

Arden Companies, one of the country’s leading manufacturers of outdoor cushions and pillows also leases a building on the property. A lot of their machinery and products were either significantly damaged or destroyed in the storm.

The contractor said, if everything goes as planned, they will be up and running again in less than two weeks.

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