Danville still underwater, river receding slowly

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DANVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) UPDATED STORY

Danville is still underwater in many areas.

The good news is it's sunny and the river is receding. The bad news is it's receding slower than many had anticipated. So the clean-up for the affected areas could be delayed.

"I don't foresee us being able, at the rate this is receding, to get on the trail to start any serious clean-up before Friday and probably no equipment on it much before Monday," Parks and Recreation Director of Parks Maintenance Randee Brown said.

Parks and Recreation says a little over a mile of the 11-mile trail is underwater, which doesn't seem like much, but it's segmented. They're reminding people: the tape and barricades are there for a reason.

"Don't put yourself in a situation just to get some good film footage. Take our word for it. You don't need to be in that until we open it up and say that it's safe," Brown said.

Brown says even after the trail opens, cleaning up the debris, trash and repairing fences will take the rest of the summer.

As for the River District Tower, which is home to Spectrum Medical: the basement had about three to four feet of water in it at the crest, but it's receding and Dr. Mark Hermann says there is no structural damage.

"We're open for business. We haven't missed a beat. We just have to hold back some parking a little while so people aren't swimming, but other than that it's not a problem," Hermann said.

Hermann says he expected the building to flood, and thankfully they were prepared.

"This is not a surprise. We weren't expecting it quite this early, but it is what it is, and actually, it's considered a good test of how you deal with that," Hermann said.

A team should be at the River District Tower tomorrow to start cleaning up. Parks and Recreation hopes to salvage some of the silt they clean up to actually use on the athletic fields around the city.

Everyone is trying to stay as optimistic as they can. The thing they're stressing the most is that people should not go into the closed areas because it's unsafe.

ORIGINAL STORY

Another soggy day in Southside. They've had several road closures, and even some people without power for a few hours this morning.

The river is high. You can barely even see where the White Mill Dam is supposed to be.

Several streets are water covered. Some of those are passable, others are closed.

The Riverwalk Trail is underwater in most spots.

Officials are saying what we've been hearing for several days now: turn around, don't drown.

"You never know what's under that water. You really can't see and it doesn't take much to impact and float a vehicle," says Danville Public Works Director, Richard Drazenovich.

The first floor of the new Spectrum Medical Building is even under water.

Drazenovich says it may rise a little more. He says once it crests, the river level should go down quickly.

"By tomorrow it should be out of the streets and dropping rapidly," he says.

He says if you see any road issues or trees down, to call them. The number for Public Works is (434) 799-5245.



 
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