King George News

Cathy Dyson writes about King George County. You can email her at

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County reimbursed for expenses for damages from Tropical Storm Lee

Westmoreland, Caroline and King George counties are among a number of Virginia localities eligible for federal disaster aid for damage done by the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee.

President Barack Obama recently declared the overwhelming rainfall that occurred Sept. 8–9 to be a federal disaster. In some areas, more than 20 inches of rain fell in a 24-hour span, washing out roads and toppling trees. The president’s announcement means that federal disaster aid is available to the Commonwealth of Virginia to supplement or reimburse state and local recovery efforts after the storm.

The King George County Service Authority suffered about $40,000 in losses during the tropical storm, Deputy Emergency Management Coordinator Steven Lynd said.

The sudden deluge of rain washed out the access road to the Purkins Corner Wastewater Treatment Plant. Within hours, the raging water created a ravine that was 12 to 15 feet deep, said Chris Thomas, the authority’s general manager.

Workers installed two larger culverts under the road and spread about 5,000 yards of fill material. A new gravel road surface brought the total project cost to about $25,000, Thomas said.

The authority also lost a generator when its Monmouth station was flooded during the storm. That item cost about $15,000.

Another $2,000 in damage occurred at Barnesfield Park off State Route 301, where mulch and other materials were washed away in the storm.

“The county had pretty significant damages and we’re glad to have this declaration,” Lynd said.

The largest chunk of the emergency funds are likely to go to the Virginia Department of Transportation for road and bridge repairs. VDOT estimated that the storm, coupled with the earlier Hurricane Irene, caused $2.1 million worth of damage to roads in Westmoreland alone.

The federal funds are only available for localities with damage to public infrastructure. The money is not intended for damage to private property.