One month later: Lynchburg still cleaning up after tornado

Lynchburg has collected about 10.7 million pounds of tree debris

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Almost a month after an EF-3 tornado damaged parts of Lynchburg and Campbell County, businesses continue to rebuild. 

Homeowners, such as Courtney Alford, are still dealing with damage assessments.

"Things are going well. We've gotten all the trees removed and now we're just waiting on the insurance company to replace the garage and the patio furniture and stuff like that,” Alford said. 

The city is still cleaning up.

"It's amazing. We feel like staff has done an amazing job picking up and keeping that balance between the regular duties and the storm cleanup,” Clay Simmons, deputy director of the Department of Public Works, said. 

Simmons said his staff took a break from storm cleanup last week to catch up on other services,, such as bulk cleanup. This week, they're back on the road, picking up what Mother Nature left behind.
"We've cleared many roads multiple times, five and six times, only to come back and have there still be brush and debris coming out,” Simmons said.

A month ago, the city's disposal site was empty. As of Monday, city staff have dumped about 10.7 million pounds of tree debris.

"That has been picked up largely by in-house staff. We have not had a whole lot of contract support,” Simmons said.

City officials said they expect another couple of months of cleaning up before things feel normal again.

"(We) plead for everyone to be patient with us. We're doing the best we can with a very limited staff we have. Who is tired and been working a lot of six, seven-day weeks, but are still pushing,” Simmons said

About the Author: