* * Morning News, Tuesday, June 6, 1995 - 5A
Allison smacks South
wary of storm
Memories of Alberto aftermath
remain fresh in minds of many
By Gary L Carter ered roads in Laurens County south-
The Associated Press . east of Macon Monday night and
South Georgia residents were U.S. 441 and state highway 46 were
wary but not overly concerned as being monitored for possible closure
Hurricane Allison came ashore Mon- as the rain tapered off, said Missy
day over north Florida, was quickly Williamson, dispatcher at the Lau-
downgraded to a tropical storm and, rens County Sheriffs Department.
later, a tropical depression. County schools would be closed to-
For some people, Allison revived -day, she said.
memories of last year's torrential "But right now we're pretty
rain and flooding caused by Tropical calm," she said.
Storm Alberto. Earlier Monday, people in com-
But unlike Alberto, which hov- munities hardest hit by last July's
ered over Georgia for several days, flooding were ready for the worst as
Allison and the heavy rains it Allison approached.
brought made a steady exit toward S^JWe're really not too nervous
South Carolina to the northeast .as yet," said Charles Tyson, city man-
the evening progressed. ager of Bainbridge. "Of course,
The National Hurricane Center in we're still thinking about the one
Miami, Fla., downgraded Allison to ^ttiat started with an 'A' last year."
a tropical depression late Monday as Pat Clausori, who still lives in a
top winds dropped to 20 mph. The mobile home in the front yard of her
system's center was near Alma, 88 home flooded last year by Lake
miles southwest of .Savannah, by 10 Blackshear, told the Cordele Dis-
p.m. It was expected to brush South patch her reaction to Allison was
Carolina before heading out to the "knots in my stomach."
Atlantic Ocean, but "waters are too As the storm's center was still
cool for redevelopment," said the offshore, one of its outstretched
National Hurricane Center's Pat arms spawned a tornado that struck
Pritchett ,',.';,". Kings. Bay Naval Submarine Base
"The sun's shining in patches early Monday, causing extensive
right now," Michelle Miles, an damage to the base recreational fa-
emergency worker in Seminole
County -in extreme southwest Geor-
gia, said Monday evening. "We had
cilities but no injuries,
ton said the storm damaged the auto
Chief Petty Officer Stacey Bying- Coping &
some roads flooding in areas were it body shop, tennis courts, batting
normally floods. It's turning out to cages, pitching machines and sever-
be pretty nice out there." al vehicles at the base at St. Marys
Flash flood watches and warn* on the southeast Georgia coast.
ings were canceled for south Geor- The weather service said another
gia by 10:40 p.m., but the weather Above: Volunteers and
service placed 34 counties in east 2 to 5 inches of rain was expected .workers clean up debris from
central Georgia from just north of over central and south Georgia, The Crooked River
Augusta to Cordele to just north of some in areas that had up to 4 inches
earlier Monday. Elementary School in St.
Savannah under a flash flood watch. Marys following a tornado
In Decatur County in south Geor- Albany reported'receiving 4.22 spawned by hurricane Allison
gia, 10 roads were under water by inches of rain during the period from on Monday. Tornado damage
early evening. Some of the roads 8 p.m. Sunday to 8 p.m. Monday, the was also reports at Kings Bay
would be open by this morning, said weather service said. Valdosta re-
Earl McGrotha, director of the De- ceived 1.68 inches during that same Navel Submarine Base. Left:
catur County Emergency Manage- .period. Basay Boldoe of Albany
ment Agency in Baihbridge. Water climbs out of his car after it
also covered several roads in Grady Alberto moved over Alabama and stalled on a street flooded by
Georgia during the Fourth of July
County, where sheriffs deputies di- weekend last year and stayed for heavy rains.
rected traffic. . . , . . ' . ' several days, causing the Flint and
"Wejye-jgot a lot of water in Ocmulgee Rivers to overflow.
yardar McGrotha said. "They have • * " **?• - ' ' -* .photo* by The Atsoclllttf Pr»M
access to the house, there's just wa- The flooding killed 31 people and
ter there." : did $350 million damage, affecting 55
Volunteers were closing rain-cov- of the 159 counties in Georgia.
Rodents feast on Surfs still up Storm turns thoughts
Chatham Jail's to flood insurance
emergency rations By LoyaH Solomon
The first hurricane of the season
inesses under the hew law were
raised front $250,000 to $500,000 for
buildings and $300,000 to $500,000 for
ByTomZotlntr caused property owners in Savannah contents.
Savannah News-Press to start thinking about flood insur- And even though the new law ex-
ance. tended the waiting period, there are
Chatham County officials thought they were being exceptions:
prudent in 1994 when they bought $63,000 of emergency "The first call we got this morn- • There is no waiting period fol-
food supplies for the Chatham County jail. ; ing was from a gentleman who lowing the initial purchase of flood
But it turned into the best smorgasbord local mice wanted to come straight down, buy a insurance in making a initial loan or
have ever seen. policy andjhave it in effect within 24 increasing, extending or renewing a
Rodents have eaten their way through 182 cases of hours,'H?aid Carolyn Shepard, who loan. The insurance then becomes
"Meals Ready to Eat" stored in a warehouse at the jail, works with Allstate in Varsity Plaza effective when the loan is closed.
according to an internal audit report. on the southside. • There is no waiting period if .the
"Looks like the mice had a pretty good time," said "I hated to disappoint him, but I initial purchase occurs during the 13
. '• .- Reese White, internal had to tell him that there is now a 30- months following the revision or up-
audit director for Chat- day waiting period on flood insur- dating of a flood insurance rate
Rodents have eaten ham County. ance - unless you are buying a map. In such a case, the policy will
their way through theThe county bought prepackaged
piece of property for the first time,"
go into effect at 12:01 a.m. the day
182 cases of "Meals meals from an Indiana after purchase.
Until recently, homeowners only Flood losses are not covered by
Ready to Eat" company in September had to wait five days for their flood regular homeowner's or business in-
1994 to feed prisoners insurance to become effective. New surance.
stored in a ware- in the event a strong Adam Tmumftavannah Newt-Prett regulations extended that Waiting The National Flood Insurance
house at the jail, hurricane knocked out period to 30 days, according to the Program, administered by the Fed-
the kitchen facilities, Pat and Trad Young swim in rough surf on Tybee Beach near the DeSoto Motel Federal Emergency Management eral Insurance Administration,
according to an in- said George Lynch, di- Monday. The Jonesboro, GA, couple were here for their 10th anniversary. Pat Agency. makes federally backed flood insur-
ternal audit report. vices. of Central Ser-
rector Young said, "I don't care if it was a hurricane, I was going to get in the The National Flood Insurance ance available in communities that
water... There's some killer waves out there." Reform Act of 1994, signed into law adopt and enforce flood pi a in man-
in September, also increased the agement ordinances to reduce future
Meals Ready to Bat are well-known - and not uni- maximum coverage amounts for flood damage.
versally loved - among hunters, backpackers and U.S. flood insurance policies for home- In Savannah, there are floodplain
Army soldiers. They're sealed in tough brown plastic,
and the starchy main courses are usually bland offer-
ings like tuna with noodles, corned beef hash or spaghet-
Officials prepare for worst case owners from $185,000 to $250,000 for
the home and $60,000 to $100,000 for
areas of the city where flood insur-
ance is required before a mortgage
lender will make a loan on a home
ti with meat sauce. that the storm would stall over this area. The maximum coverages for bus- purchase.
By Brad Swope
Mice seem to have found them delicious. Savannah News-Press "that's what we're preparing for: the
When employees of the Walter J. Mitchell Sheriffs For those paid to worry about weather di- worst-case scenario," he said. /
Complex inspected the inventory in March, they found sasters hitting Savannah, just looking out the Saturated ground helped aggravate the fall Insurance firm rebounds from Hugo
rodent droppings, dead mice and swarms of flying in- window Monday afternoon was a comfort. flooding This year's dry spring could help if
sects in the warehouse. Morning rain had given way to dry skies heavy rains come. The Associated Press looking forward to celebrating its
and even fleeting moments of sunshine. Year-to-date rainfall was running more CHARLESTON, SC Unisun 100th anniversary in 1991.
"It was determined the bugs were living off the bod- than 5 inches below normal as of Monday Insurance Co . the oldest in Charles- But then came Hugo and 35,000
ies of the dead rodents." sheriffs Capt. Bruce Riner But with Tropical Storm Allison's bands of
rainy weather still swirling through the re- morning, which means underlying soil could ton, has recovered from the black claims that more than doubled what
wrote in a memo. gion, Chatham County emergency officials still be dry enough to soak up runoff. night almost six years ago when the company was collecting in pre-
But the majority of the provisions were undamaged Not overly dry. though: More than an inch Hurricane Hugo threatened to wash miums The company rang up $46
didn't want to take any chances.
The sheriffs department moved the remaining 830 So late Monday afternoon, they met and of rain fell between Thursday and Sunday, ac- it out million in losses during two years
cases into a large steel container designed to carry promptly decided to open Gadsden Elementa- cording to National Weather Service totals Covering storm losses left the and its capital fell sixfold between
freight and purchased from the Georgia Ports Authori- ry School on May Street as an evacuation shel- The scare value of Allison also provides an company 40 percent smaller Unisun 1988 and 1989
ty ter in case it was needed for flooding victims antidote to hurricane complacency, Smith announced last week it is no longer "One hundred years we were los-
The new makeshift storage shed is now parked out- Red Cross spokeswoman Cherie Thompson said renewing homeowners policies in ing in six hours" of Hugo, Chairman
side the door of the warehouse. reminded those who may use the shelter to "In this county, most people don't start South Carolina because the business James I) Lubs said.
bring needed medication, pillows, blankets, worrying about hurricanes until August and isn't profitable Amerisure Cos. of Detroit, one of
Prepackaged food for emergency workers is also September." he said But these days the insurer, which
stockpiled at the old county jail on Montgomery Street baby and infant supplies and toys for small the 100 largest insurers in the nation,
children. Hurricanes and tropical storms are unusu paid its final Hugo claim last year, pledged a $15 million note in 1990
and at the headquarters of the Chatham Emergency al this early in the hurricane season, which is posting profits nearly as high as
Management Agency in the Old Courthouse on Wright Refreshments were provided Monday night and helped to convert Unisun from a
and breakfast was available this morning. started Thursday But history shows they're before the storm. The (Charleston) mutual to a stock-owned company.
Square. Both supplies were untouched by mice, Lynch not unknown. Smith noted Post and Courier reported Monday
The shelter will remain open as long as it is In exchange, Amerisure owns all
said. In fact, November hurricanes such as "What I'm most proud of is we
needed /Thompson said. 20,000 shares of company stock.
There doesn't appear to be a connection between the At rmdafternoon Monday. Allison was mov- last fall's Gordon have several times pre- had $255 million in claims and lived
dead mice at the jail and the quality of the Meals Ready ing north across Georgia at a steady pace, ceded May or early June hurricanes the fol- to tell about it," company President Unisun's assets have now in-
to Eat, Lynch said which was encouraging because brisk-moving lowing years Richard K Russel said creased to $61 million, although
"I'd like to think we have greedy mice, instead of storm/have less gpportunity to dump rain. "There's a noticeable pattern but 1 can't Before Hugo the company, then that's well below of the peak of $112
bad MtiEs," he said. * Still, Smith wasn't ruling out the possibility explain it," he said knofcfh as American Mutual, was million before Hugo. *