Damage, root balls still an issue for storm victims - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Damage, root balls still an issue for storm victims

Root balls pose a problem for many (Source:WALB) Root balls pose a problem for many (Source:WALB)
Repairs are ongoing (Source:WALB) Repairs are ongoing (Source:WALB)
Stacey Driggers, Fuller Center (Source:WALB) Stacey Driggers, Fuller Center (Source:WALB)
BJ Fletcher, City Commissioner (Source:WALB) BJ Fletcher, City Commissioner (Source:WALB)

With heavy rain and strong winds forecast for Monday in Albany, those homeowners still cleaning up after January's storms are making sure they're ready.

Many roofs are still patched up with tarps and a massive amount of root balls dot properties throughout the city.   

Volunteers continue to use social media and other means to help storm survivors rebuild and possibly prepare themselves for more on the way.

"The longer these houses sit exposed, the worse the damage is going to get," Stacey Driggers, an employee of the Fuller Center, said.  "So, that's why getting to folks quickly, with these type of problems, is important." 

Whether its keeping folks dry or helping them remove costly root balls, city leaders said they know many are still struggling. 

"This is an average size," City Commissioner BJ Fletcher said. "There are many of them out here that are two times this size." 

Around 700 root balls remain anchored to lawns throughout Albany. For many, its a reminder of the devastation caused by January's storms.  

"Root balls legally have to come to the curb or they have to be outside," Fletcher said. "We cannot legally take our equipment in the yard."

Fletcher adds a lot of people who are under insured or meeting financial limits don't have the means to get rid of them. So, she's calling for the city manager to plan a root ball round up.

"I've had people sort of laughing at me about it," Fletcher said. "You know, it reminds me of that little song 'keep these doggies rolling'. We just want a rootball round up. That's what we're trying to do." 
And, volunteers, willing to give their time, are still in the streets making sure people are safe and ready for anything that may come their way. 

"I promise you," Fletcher said. "When we do get these things corrected, its going to be bigger, better stronger and brighter."  

A promise many are still working to fulfill day-after-day. 

Fletcher adds the city is continuing to work on other storm repairs, including street lights. 

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