Downed trees, flooding problems for Southampton County

Published 9:00 pm Saturday, August 27, 2011

COURTLAND—Flooding on roadways and downed trees blocking roads seemed to be the biggest problems created in Southampton County from Hurricane Irene on Saturday.

No injuries were reported.

“Trees are down everywhere and flooding is a problem all over,” said Sgt. Wanda Covington with the Southampton County Sheriff’s Office.

Virginia Department of Transportation workers will begin removing trees once winds are below 39 mph. It’s policy that they don’t work when wind speeds are greater than 39 mph, Covington said.

The county also continued to monitor conditions of the Blackwater and Nottoway rivers. Residents were encouraged to remain vigilant as moderate flooding is anticipated along the Blackwater as conditions persist into Sunday afternoon.

Two motorists traveling in different locations on Route 58 had their vehicles damaged when trees fell on them, Covington said. One was near Adams Grove in the Drewryville area. No one was hurt.

“Most of the county is out of power,” she said.

It’s not known how long the area will be without electricity. Efforts will be focused on emergency public health issues, blocked roads and hospitals.

Once the storm has blown through on Sunday, damages will be assessed and critical infrastructure will be taken care of first.

A tree also fell onto a vacant trailer on Pulley Drive in Courtland behind the Nottoway House at about 6 p.m. Saturday.

No one was evacuated due to flooding, Covington said. By Saturday evening, the shelter at Southampton High School had 103 people; 200 cots were set up for the American Red Cross shelter, which provided residents with three meals. The high school has a generator.