Hundreds will be without power until Thursday night

13News Now Audrey Esther has the story

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) --  Sherwood Lakes residents are still canoeing across a giant flooded lake to get around their neighborhood.  

"We ride our canoe over, put it in the neighbors yard or in the back of the truck. Go get our groceries. Go to work. Take the kids to school, what ever we have to do and then do the reverse to get back home," says Debi Spadafora about getting out of her Virginia Beach neighborhood. "We feel like we're on an island but at least we can come over here."

To the other side of her neighborhood where her neighbors are ready to help. 

"When you're the person on the receiving end," Spadafora says as she teared up. "Just having people call and text and offer to take your kids places," like her own daughter. "We canoed her over and took her to gymnastics today and just the help has been amazing."  

So too has been the flooding, which these residents hope to never see again.

"So we need to find a solution for the long term so that if the lake continuously drains we won't have this problem again," she says.

"Once we can kind of take care of the crisis at hand we're going to have some engineers out and try and figure out what we can do to avoid this kind of disaster next time," says Drew Langford with the City of Virginia Beach Public Works Department.

Installing a pump station he says could be one solution. However that was of little help to those in Rosemont area, like Austin Starr's family who's now living with extended family near Stumpy Lake.

"We lost everything our beds, our toys, our cars. Everything it's just gone," Starr says. 

He says he's thankful though to have his family.

"My family and I pray every night for the other victims of this tragedy," he says.

As of Wednesday night, there are more 600 power outages in Southeast Virginia. According to Dominion Virginia Power, some of those outages will not be repaired until Thursday at 11 pm.    

Bonita Billingsly Harris with Dominion Virginia Power  had this to say as of 7:30 p.m., Wednesday evening:

Individual estimated times of restoration became available today when customers check their accounts.

99% of customers impacted by Hurricane Matthew have now been restored! As of 4:00PM 4,600 customers await restoration at 500 work locations.

Safety remains our priority.

Crews have successfully collapsed into the hardest hit areas. The vast majority of remaining customers, with the exception of the coastal portions of Virginia Beach and Outer Banks, will be restored tonight.

There is still the potential for a handful of isolated locations where customers may not be restored tomorrow due to access issues or damaged distribution equipment caused by excessive flooding. We have a process in place to notify impacted customers of this condition as well as their revised estimated times for restoration, based on the condition.

The company has more than 3,500 people helping to restore power, including workers from utilities in 11 states, as far south as Florida and as far north as Massachusetts and as far south as Florida.

Our mission of a safe and efficient restoration effort will continue tomorrow as we complete restoration for these final customers.

 


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