Local News

Roanoke Rapids flood victims say city drain pipes partly to blame

Posted September 11, 2012 10:27 p.m. EDT

— Roanoke Rapids residents whose homes and cars were damaged by flash flooding last month say the city is partly to blame.

Nearly a foot of rain fell in Halifax and Northampton counties Aug. 25, damaging more than 150 homes and businesses and sending more than 50 people to local shelters.

Tim Strickland was forced from his home by flood waters. He said at a City Council meeting Tuesday that clogged, small city drain pipes made the flooding much worse.

"My house is still there, and it is going to flood again," he said. "Until the drainage is fixed, it will flood again."

City Manager Joe Scherer said there's no reason to believe that the city is liable for any damages.

"There has been hardly any blockages or anything in the areas that would have caused the pipes to back up," he said. "Our analysis is that the system was overwhelmed by the water that fell in that short period of time."

He added, however, that city leaders would look into whether drainage pipes should be widened.