Late Monday night, the American Red Cross moved one family from a flooded home to a motel.
Two sisters and two children were living in an apartment on West Bellview Drive. Tiffany Cummings, one of the women, said they just moved in and did not have renters insurance yet.
Cummings said she woke up in the middle of the night to use the restroom, and when she got out of bed she was standing in several inches of water.
Tiffany Cummings, Columbia Resident: “First, I hope there’s no electrical problems going to be touching me. Second, I don’t want to drown. I have a water phobia.”
Cummings said there was water in the two bedrooms, the hallway, in the kitchen and going into the living room.
She called 911 and firefighters came to check out the entire apartment to make sure there were no electrical problems. They also warned neighbors that standing water was rising up to the vehicles in the back parking lot.
Red Cross volunteers met Cummings at the fire department within about 30 minutes with kits containing personal hygiene items and referrals to partner agencies.
Cummings said the only property damaged was the mattresses and box springs. The landlord had the carpets dried today. Cummings said she is thankful the Red Cross volunteers and firefighters were there to help.
Cummings: “They were just amazing. I give Red Cross props. I feel like people need to start donating even more because we don’t know when a disaster’s going to happen.”
Gary Hook with Foundation Recovery Systems said the phones were ringing off the hook this morning with calls from homeowners across Central Missouri who had water leaking in from the storm. He said events like Monday night can make a small problem like a little crack or wet spot considerably worse.
Gary Hook, Foundation Recovery Systems: “The best thing that we would recommend to any homeowner would be to ensure that the gutters stay clean and functional. That makes a lot of difference especially when we have just the normal rain events. But nights like last night with a pretty intense rain, even the best drainage and gutter corrections won’t prevent some of the things that occur.”
Fixing a home’s foundation can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $15-20,000. Hook said the best thing to prevent your home from flooding is to be proactive and have it looked at before big storms hit.
Red Cross officials said they did not have any other emergency calls last night, and they could always use some more volunteers at the new Red Cross location in Columbia.