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Flooding woes hit several counties on the First Coast

6:58 PM, Jun 25, 2012   |    comments
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In Bradford County, teams of prison inmates and civilians worked quickly to fill sandbags for residents. Brad Green was in line, trying to get as many sandbags as the county would allow.

"We'll get twenty and if we need more, we'll come back," said Green.

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The water was at his front door. He hopes the sandbags will be enough to fight back the water.

There are several property owners in his Starke neighborhood who are feeling the bite of Alligator Creek; the rapid moving water is running over anything in its path.

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"It is about that far from coming in the doors. Hopefully if it doesn't rain, we'll be okay," said Julia Griffin.

Businesses are under water as as well. The Suwannee River Economic Council was flooded and closed for the day.

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Bradford County Emergency Management officials are working with the Red Cross to help those who needs it.

"We had over seven inches of rain in the evening and as result the creeks are overflowing and the ground is saturated," said Michael Heeder. "The run off has been a little more than we can handle."

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In Clay County, the Ficketts woke up to standing water in their Middleburg home. 

"I get up at eight o clock, get out of bed and stepped in water," said Jean Fickett.

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There's damage in every room; they're concerned about the wood floors and family heirlooms.

"These are pictures of my mother and father who have passed away and they got all wet and I had to take this off," said Fickett, "I'm hoping it will dry. I mean, they're irreplaceable."

Her home flooded twice in 2009 and she thought it would never happen again.

"We're not in a flood zone," she said. 

Fickett blames the county's drainage system.

Clay County Director of Public Works Jeff Beck said they've had some drainage issues in the Knight Boxx Drive area, but there's no reason the drainage system contributed to the flooding in Fickett's home.

Beck investigated the situation and found that the drainage ditch behind her home is privately owned and not maintained by the county.

Even so, he said the county will check the adjacent system to see if there's blockage. Beck said the county has had an unusual amount of rain and the drainage system just can't handle it.

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