PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — Thursday morning’s heavy rain caused a west end Panama City Beach neighborhood to flood, however, three weeks ago the same area flooded from another heavy rain event.
Just as neighbors in the Rivera Drive/Pompano Avenue area said they were beginning to make some progress on the clean up, all of their work was washed away overnight.
Panama City Beach resident Kimberly Burton said she didn’t sleep at all Wednesday night knowing her home would flood for the second time in three weeks.
“It’s really hard to look at your home and know you can’t live in it,” Burton said. “You know come get your things and it’s just hard. I wish the county could do something to help us.”
Burton said it’s emotional and frustrating being back at square one after she’s made progress cleaning up her house after the first flood.
“It was very depressing,” Burton said. “Very hard to see because we were making a little bit of headway with the pumping that had been done and the water level had gown down quite a bit but now we’re back to lake status here.”
Some said the flooding is not only inconvenient, it’s potentially hazardous.
“Well inconvenience yes, because you have to go around, the inconvenience of people driving down to the water and looking at it which brings crazy traffic sometimes — not a lot,” said neighbor, Kevin Waldeck. “But health reasons? Yeah. Is it all rainwater? Okay? Is it backed up sewage?”
Burton and her neighbors are asking for help from the county, FEMA or anyone who can address these issues.
“I just can’t believe in the 21st century there’s not some sort of solution/resolution to this problem,” Burton said.
Fellow neighbor, Rene Aldridge, said she is frustrated for the people whose homes were impacted.
“It’s horrible,” Aldridge said. “It’s really horrible. It smells and I mean there’s probably snakes in it and everything I don’t know I haven’t seen one yet but it’s scary and it does come up in my yard, thank God my house is a little taller.”
Bay County officials said they were pumping out water on Thursday and they would continue to do so in the coming days. However, they have to take the water to a sewer treatment plant because one of the homes does have septic issues.
County officials have suggested neighbors try to take part in the FEMA buy-back program but residents tell us none of them qualify.
As for a solution, county officials said a fix is complicated and expensive and they don’t have answers yet.