Broken bridge blocks families from driving to their homes

Harrisburg

Gracie and Harold Troutman have lived in their Jackson Township home for 40 years.

“This flood has destroyed our property like never before,” said Gracie Troutman. “It destroyed our driveway, we lost three vehicles, damaged our whole barn in two different places.”

Doors were torn off. Their basement got packed with two feet of mud.

What were once carefully tendered gardens and flowers are now mud and stones, thrown by Mother Nature.

“Years ago, Harold started gardening for my health,” said Gracie Troutman.

The Troutmans farmed food and the majority of their outdoor equipment are nowhere in sight.

“It flooded just about everything out,” said Gracie Troutman. “I think we’ve lost just about everything.”

Gracie Troutman says water flowed from state-owned Mountain House Road onto Mountain Vista Lane.

She tells us a large grassy area on her property was covered with three feet of water when the worst of the rain hit a week and a half ago.

Pounding rain washed away the stone that held down a nearby bridge, and now the cement is completely cracked. Neighbors say it will cost $22,000 to fix.

The biggest problem is the bridge on the Troutmans’ property is the only pathway to drive up to three other homes.

“We reached out to FEMA and they instructed us to go to emergency management,” said Lisa Miller, a mom whose home is blocked by the broken bridge. “Somebody came out from them and they stated that we were not covered.”

That’s because it’s a private road.

Still, the families affected are continuing to try to get help with the bill, by reaching out to the county and the state.

“To reassess it,” said Miller. “To see that there is obvious damage.”

In the meantime, kids and adults are using a wooden pathway. Then, they’re walking a mile up a hill or using a tractor to get to their homes.

Miller worries that there is no quick way in or out.

“We’re stuck here and one of our emergency management individuals said, ‘I’m sorry to tell you Mrs. Miller but there is nothing we’d be able to do for you if there was an emergency,” said Miller. 

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